The Mountain View-based American Youth Rugby Union (AYRU) celebrates Rugby Awareness Month in November by hosting several events throughout the city.
Mountain View residents Paul Lynch and Scott Miller created the AYRU in 2009 to provide children in the Silicon Valley an opportunity to experience the fast-growing sport of rugby.
Lynch described the AYRU as a “non-contact youth rugby organization” that operates similarly to AYSO, with safety and fun the top priorities.
Events in Mountain View planned for Rugby Awareness Month include:
• Free open sessions for youth, 2-4 p.m. Saturday at Sylvan Park and 2-4 p.m. Sunday and Nov. 24 at Landels Elementary School. “The open sessions are an opportunity for children, and extended family, to come along and try, free of charge, this relatively new and exciting sport,” Miller said.
• Lunchtime demonstrations of non-contact rugby, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at Google headquarters and 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Nov. 21 at Symantec headquarters. Known as rookie rugby, this non-contact form of the sport is designed for boys and girls of all shapes and sizes. Rugby players from local colleges will participate in the demos.
• Golden Rugby Ball Treasure Hunt, Nov. 22. The public is invited to solve a puzzle on the AYRU website (ayru.net) that will lead to the hiding place of a gold-painted rugby ball. The winner will receive a $100 prize and free registration for the 2013-14 season. There is no fee to enter the hunt.
The AYRU season runs from mid-November to mid-March, with games and practices scheduled Saturday or Sunday afternoons in Mountain View. The organization is open to boys and girls ages 5-15.
To register to play and for more information, visit ayru.net.