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A rich tradition of local youth sports!

A rich tradition of local youth sports!


Elmira Small Fry Football began in 1952.  The first games took place at Brand Park on Elmira's Southside.  In the 1980s, the City of Elmira moved ESF to McKinnon Park on Lake Street.  From 2010-2019, youth athletics participation underwent a huge decline.  In 2019, Elmira Small Fry Football joined the Southern Tier Youth Football Conference as a traveling league.

Football player Ernie Davis, who was the first African American winner of the Heisman Trophy, found his beginnings in Elmira. The movie, ‘The Express’ tells Ernie’s amazing story which began while playing in the Small Fry Football League right here in Elmira (see below.)

Elmira Small Fry is proud of its heritage. It is our goal to promote the positive qualities of integrity, leadership, courage, and humility, which were exemplified by Ernie Davis during his life.

Each year hundreds of local boys and girls participate in football, basketball and cheerleading with Elmira Small Fry. 

We are always looking for more historical notes regarding Elmira Small Fry sports.  If you have any pictures, videos, or information that you would like to share with us, please email Grant Woodward at [email protected].

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