McCann Tech is marking 50 years of football at this season's home opener on Sept. 7. Above, the 2012 team; below the school's first varsity team in 1965. See more photos at McCann Football.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — It has been a busy summer for the folks in the McCann Tech high school football program.
The players have been hitting the weight room. Their coach has been hitting the books.
It is the golden anniversary of Charles H. McCann Technical High School, where they have been playing football every year since the school opened its doors. That means it also is a milestone year for the football program.
To honor the occasion, the Hornets are putting together a commemorative program chronicling the first 50 years of McCann football.
And that has sent head coach Bob LeClair digging into the archives.
"We've been working on things throughout the summer for the program," LeClair said this week. "I've been at the library for quite a few hours now going through old newspapers, getting stats and putting things together."
He had a little bit of a head start. In 1988, the football program did a silver anniversary program that provided a lot of the facts and figures LeClair needs. The 25th anniversary publication was the impetus for this year's project.
To fill in the gaps, LeClair is scanning old yearbook photos and soliciting photos from any members of the McCann football family.
"We figure the program we'd like to put together will be close to 50 pages long," he said. "We'll have team pictures, stats and anything else we can find. ... The '88 program was a good starting point."
The football team itself had a relatively humble starting point: two games played in its inaugural season. But it has come a long way since then. Two years ago, the Hornets captured a league championship and made the school's first trip to the Western Massachusetts Division 4 Super Bowl.
LeClair and the McCann Football Booster Club want to honor all of the players and coaches who helped pave the way for that success. Everyone who has had a hand in building the program is invited back to this season's home opener on Sept. 7.
There was some thought given to a reception on Friday evening before the game, but LeClair, the program's head coach for nearly a decade, would not have been able to attend because he'll be scouting a competitor on that Friday night.
The commemorative 50th anniversary program will be available for sale on Sept. 7 and at every McCann home game this fall. To help defray the printing cost, the Booster Club is selling ads ranging in price from $25 to $200.
McCann football's legacy in the community has helped get that fund-raising effort moving.
"The response has been pretty good so far," LeClair said. "A lot of people are buying ads. We're certainly hitting up businesses of McCann alums who played, and there are a lot of them."
For information about advertising in McCann's 50th anniversary commemorative program, contact Stacy LeClair at 413-652-1002. The deadline to advertise is Aug. 21.