Soccer Camps Increase Skills and Confidence
Fairview resident, Ed Puskarich started Ed Puskarich Soccer Camps in 1979. His son, Eddie Puskarich, 2012 Lovejoy High alumnus, is the camp director. Ed played soccer for the Chicago Power, Milwaukee Wave and Dallas Burn. Eddie has been playing soccer since he was three years old and said, “I grew up in locker rooms.” Eddie is currently a coach for the Texas Spurs FC as well as a health and human performance coach. He played pro-soccer in Denmark for a year.
Ed Puskarich Soccer Camps are co-ed camps for children 5 – 18 years old. Eddie said that anyone who loves soccer will love these camps. Their philosophy is that they will teach kids to play soccer with a smile on their face, he said, “If they don’t have a smile on their face, why do it?” The sessions will cover every aspect of soccer. They offer intermediate and advanced camps. It is recommended that athletes use their own judgement as to which skill level they should attend.
Eddie explains that campers should expect to receive, “A whole lot of soccer, fun, jokes, games and improved tricks and skills.” They also offer motivational prizes at the end of each week of camp. Eddie describes aspects of a good soccer player, “The player will be confident and have excitement about the sport. They will have good touch on the ball and both offensive and defensive abilities. They will also have a great soccer IQ.” A large part of the focus of these camps is spent on building what Eddie calls, “awesome human beings.”
Their camp staff is comprised of Ed, Eddie, eight college coaches and numerous current college soccer players. Since college coaches are part of the staff, these camps have become a recruitment opportunity. Coaches from Hardin Simmons, UT Tyler, UT Dallas, Univ. of Dallas, Univ. of North Texas, Trinity University and Northwestern State were staff members last year during the camps.
Thirty-nine years ago, the first Ed Puskarich Soccer Camps were held in Ohio. In August, these camps will be held in Ohio and Pittsburgh. Eddie said when the camps were first held, there were approximately 15 campers total. Now, they average approximately 50 campers in each advanced camp.
Last summer, Eddie took two Lovejoy High School soccer players with him as a part of the Stars ‘N Stripes International Soccer Tours. One of the students was the son of his seventh grade history teacher. They took in the European sights and played in some of the largest youth soccer tournaments of the year.
The one year goal of Ed Puskarich Soccer Camps is to give every athlete a great experience. Eddie said, “We take so much pride in educating the kids and having a blast while we’re there. We want them to come back next year.” Their five year goals are to expand to other areas and attract more college coaches.
To register for Ed Puskarich Soccer Camps, go to www.starsnstripessoccer.com/content/camps. Pre-registration is not necessary, on the day of camp you can register on-site. To see camp costs, dates, times and locations, please see the ad on this page.