New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper

The Sports Journal

NBHS vs. Pulaski Not the Only Football Tradition

Do you remember the days when the whole City would turn out to see New Britain High School play Pulaski High School Football on Thanksgiving Day?

New Britain won most, if not all of those games (I’m still waiting for someone to tell me otherwise). NBHS was a bigger school than Pulaski and was more known for its athleticism. Residents always took sides, but most, due to size, seemed to favor the Canes. Regardless of the outcome residents did not want to miss the big game and incorporated it into their Thanksgiving Day plans. It was usually played around 10:30 a.m. and was done by 1 p.m.

It was great to see our youth participate in a yearly event. I miss it!

Another important aspect of the game, at least in my family, was half-time. Who didn’t want to see the bands perform? The New Britain High School Band was about the biggest thing you could be involved in.

I covered sports in Simsbury for many years. They used to say in Simsbury that those who could not make the soccer team, played football.

In New Britain it seemed that if you did not make the band, you played football. That’s how important the Golden Hurricanes Marching Band was. It was all part of the fun and mystique of New Britain High and it sparkled nowhere more than on Thanksgiving Day during the annual high school football game.

It may have been years since that rivalry took place as there no longer is a Pulaski High School, but it is important for residents to take on a new rivalry or better yet a new tradition. Who better than New Britain to play than our neighbor in Berlin? It is starting to become well-known that the Golden Hurricanes meet the Redcoats the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving. It is each team’s final regular season game.

The game is at Veteran’s Stadium in Willow Brook Park at 7 p.m. This one is a bit tougher as it is not a given the Canes will win. It’s always a close match that can go either way. The two town mayors often hold a tailgate party and place a friendly wager on the winner.

It’s time residents of New Britain regain some of that swagger for our teams we felt 30 years ago. Much of it does not depend on how good the team is, but more on how we feel about our City.

I hear about the good old days of New Britain a lot. Yes, New Britain had some great days. But, should that stop you from enjoying what we have today?

New Britain High School had a good season with a winning record. Berlin has only one loss so far.

I have little doubt Nov. 23 (mark the date on your calendar right now) will be the biggest night in New Britain High School football this year.

Show your pride for our great City and start a new tradition this year. Cheer on our football team and give our band a big hand. The kids work hard to make this night special. They deserve a big crowd and we all could use something to feel good about, especially this year.

Go Canes!