The county's fall rec season for youth gets under way in earnest this weekend as most local soccer programs, along with the county boys' and girls' traveling soccer leagues, begin.
And, the Carroll County Football League starts its 1991 schedule this weekend with a full slate of games.
Last weekend, the Mountain Valley Football League, a multicounty youth football loop, which includes teams from Mount Airy, Taneytown and Gamber-Smallwood, opened up, as did the Carroll County Men's FallSoftball League.
Other youth and adult activities in soccer, softball and volleyball, will start their campaigns in coming weeks.
Some local soccer squads prepared for the rigors of their upcoming seasons the past two weekends by journeying to Westview, Baltimore County, to test their wares in the annual EDRECO youth soccer tournament.
And several showed they are on top of their game by making it to their respective age bracket finals.
Deer Park Blue, coached by Henry Oswiecimka, and Glyndon, a team with half its players from CarrollCounty, were the local champs.
In an all-Carroll final, Deer Parkedged the Freedom Strikers, 1-0, Sunday afternoon at Western Hills Park in Westview to win the under-12 boys' division.
Glyndon won the under-15 girls' championship.
Two other Carroll squads also booted their way into championship games Sunday afternoon at Western Hills, but exited on the short end.
The Freedom Thunder dropped a 1-0 verdict to Perry Hall Rec Council in the under-12 girls' championship, and the Seneca Greyhounds fell to Perry Hall, 2-1, in the under-16 boys' finale.
In a development which should surprise nobody, numerous local soccer groups are expanding this year.
The Mount Airy Rec Council has seen its in-house clinic for youngsters 8 and younger grow from 45 last year to 65.
Mount Airy also is doubling the number of teams in the county boys' traveling league from three to six, although two of those teams played in Frederick County last season.
Nevertheless, those two had much smaller rosters last year, because Frederick plays with seven to a side while Carroll plays with thestandard 11.
Sam Beck, who coordinates the Mount Airy boys' traveling teams, says he expects increasing turnout for soccer in Mount Airy, even though the Linganore program drains off older children and "we have a real problem with field space."
The Charles Carroll and Winfield rec councils are getting into soccer in a big way this year as a result of a skyrocketing registration.
Charles Carroll, whichserves the Silver Run-Union Mills area north of Westminster, has seen its registration quadruple from 30 youngsters in 1989 to 120 this year.
To meet the demand, it is doubling the number of teams in thecounty's traveling leagues from three to six.
It is also startinga small, five-to-seven team in-house league for youngsters in the age 5-8 range.
Games will be played with seven players to a side.
"The idea (behind seven to a side) is to give the kids a chance to touch the ball more often," said rec council soccer coordinator Terry Borneman, of Silver Run.
He hopes the in-house program can serve as a feeder to the traveling teams, which had rough going their inaugural campaign last year.
"It was a high point when we would score,"he said.
But, he adds, his soccer program has benefited from summer clinics held for both players and coaches by Western Maryland College men's soccer coach Matt Robinson.
Borneman says that the travel teams will continue to improve as inevitable expansion in the in-house program occurs.
As for the coming season, "we'll be able to hold our own with the travel teams. We're excited about this year. Our coaches are ready and we're ready to roll," Borneman said.
There are still limited openings on the Charles Carroll under-12 and under 14 boys' and girls' traveling teams and also space in the in-house program. Information: 346-7441, by Sept. 9.
Fast-growing Winfield hasseen its soccer program grow at an even more explosive rate than Charles Carroll's.
The Winfield Rec Council ran a soccer clinic for 35 youngsters last year. This year, the council has to figure where itwill put 130.
Winfield soccer coordinator Alan Jenkins says he plans to start a six-team in-house league for the youngsters, which range in age from 6 to 9.
The league, which he says is intended primarily as a means of teaching soccer skills, will start Saturday and run until mid-November.
Each team will have about 17 players, "whichis too many," Jenkins says.
However, he says he can't find enoughvolunteers to coach additional squads.
"We called about every person on the list of 130 but we barely had about enough coaches for sixteams," Jenkins said. "Parent participation is really lacking."
But he credited local residents Ernie Pittinger and Al Kinsler, who have children in the program, for help in setting things up.
With registration climbing, Jenkins hopes to take the next step, entering a traveling team in the county boy's league next year.
Jenkins says he would take additional boys and girls in the age 6-9 age bracket, but that none will be accepted unless more parents help. Information: 635-2502.