R.I. Vintage Football Game this Saturday

Sep 27, 2019

1920’s style football returns to the Quad Cities this weekend. 

The fifth annual Vintage Football Game will be played on Saturday afternoon at Douglas Park in Rock Island. The park hosted the first NFL game held on September 26th, 1920, when the Rock Island Independents played the St. Paul Ideals. The goal of the vintage game every year is to recreate the 1920's football experience.

Organizer Simon Herrera says he and fellow organizer Chris Zimmerman met after Zimmerman found Herrera’s website about 1920’s football. After that, they decided to organize a game.

"He found a manufacturer that made thick cotton rugby shirts, and I found a football manufacturer that made old replica melon footballs. Then we just had to sit down and decide what are the rules going to be, who is going to be play and who do we need to get on board to help make this happen.”

Herrera says that every year, fans bring lawn chairs and blankets and sit next to the field at Douglas Park.

"We kind of want them to, just like they did back in the day, gather around the field and be close to the action.”

This Saturday, the gates at Douglas Park will open at 12:30 p.m., with pre-game festivities at 1 p.m. The game will begin at 2 p.m. A collection of cars from the 1920’s will also be on display, and concession stands will provide food and drink.