Serving our community since 1965
The Cheektowaga Little Loop Athletic Association Inc. was formed in 1965. This organization has been administered by members of the association who are residents of Cheektowaga for the benefit of the children of Cheektowaga. We have in the past and continue to provide the same opportunity to children who either reside in Cheektowaga or who attend Cheektowaga schools. Over the years we have provided activities for boys and girls in football and Cheerleading, boys and girls basketball, soccer and girls softball. The following is a brief history of the Little Loop Corporation.
1950 The existence of Cheektowaga Little Loop Athletic Association pre dates our incorporation in 1965. In 1950 an un-named football team from Cheektowaga opened a bank account at Marine Midland Bank on Walden Avenue. This would be the start of a fall tradition of youth football for generations of youngsters across the Town of Cheektowaga. This account remained active until the winter of 2006 when it was closed out at HSBC. Not much is known about this era. It is believed that they participated in a series of non-league games and were simply known as the football team from Cheektowaga.
1960 The first official team was formed calling themselves the Cleveland Hill Mighty Mites. This was a 13 -14 year old group whose weight class was 112 lbs. The team entered into the TYRO Football League. This was the only football organization in
Cheektowaga. 1962 A 90lbs weight class for boys 10 -12 year old was formed. These teams have now developed into what we presently know as the 150 and 125 lbs. teams. Our children are getting bigger!!
1965 The Cheektowaga Little Loop Athletic Association Inc. was formed by nine men from Cheektowaga with a New York State Corporation Charter. Incorporation occurred on December 20,1965. Our constitution is on file in Albany. We are bound to perform within the articles of the corporation's charter. We adopted the name Thunderbirds for our teams and for our logo. It was difficult for TYRO officials to accept that we had two teams playing in different divisions with the same name so we kept the name Thunderbirds for the 10 -12 year olds and called the 13 -14 year olds the Thunderchiefs.
1966 The Thunderchiefs went to the TYRO "Milk Bowl" giving the organization a feeling of great success in a short period of time. We formed boys and girls basketball for ages 10 -15. The games were played at Cleveland Hill Elementary School. In the same year the organization started up girls softball for ages 10 -15. Girls from all parts of Cheektowaga played in our league. Again we were the only league in town. Games were played on the diamonds that the Cleveland Hill Little League were not using anymore at Harlem and Genesee streets. Many of these girls went on to play for their high school teams.
1967 The 10 to 12 year old Thunderbirds went to the TYRO "Milk Bowl" played the week before Thanksgiving. At this time the girls Cheerleading was formed. The Cheerleading squad consisted of just eight girls.
1969 There were so many boys registered for the 10 -12 year old team(54) that another team was formed. This additional team played in the Western New York Football League which consisted mostly of city teams from Buffalo.
1970's Other teams were formed in the town of Cheektowaga including St. Barnabas and latter Airlanes. These formations reduced the number of kids to draw from in the area and we were forced to dissolve the team in the WNY. League. However a 7 -10 year old team was formed and we called them the Thunderbolts. We were still members of the TYRO Football League at this time. During the 70's we were approached by both the Amherst and Kensington Football Organizations to join forces with us. They wanted us to take on both their players and board members. We explained that we were a Cheektowaga organization created as a vehicle to provide entertainment for the youth of Cheektowaga. The organization wanted to maintain a venue predominantly for the children who reside in and attend school in the town of Cheektowaga. This feeling holds true today. As stated in our constitution we are open to all participants who reside in the town of Cheektowaga but not necessarily limited to
1980's During this period Cheektowaga Little Loop became a member of the OATKA Football League. This was to be a strictly suburban league whose games were to be played on Saturdays instead of the traditional Sundays. We traveled out to Pembroke, East Aurora, North Collins, Evans, E.G.., Hamburg and Carnegie Scranton to name a few. We were held in high regard by all the organizations.
1990's 1990 was a pivotal year for the organization. We finally got a home field. We played our games at Cleveland Hill H.S., at Harlem and Genesee Streets, along Harlem Road in Town Park, at Maryvale Elementary School, Reim Road and finally At
Town Park. It took over ten years of hard work and promotion to secure a home field for Cheektowaga Little Loop. We thank all the past Board members who devoted their time and energy in achieving this great task. Thanks to them we had a field and
concession stand we could call our own.
The New Millennium
2000 to 2003 This was a very difficult period for the organization. Lack of leadership and a division among the Board of Directors as to the way the organization should be operated almost lead to its self destruction. Personal ambitions of the adults had
replaced the philosophy that this was a youth organization which should run on their behalf. Long time members were forced to leave the organization. We lost our respectability not only with the Town of Cheektowaga and the other football organizations and leagues in the area but most importantly we lost our credibility with the kids and parents for whom this organization was established for. Registration of kids from the Cheektowaga area dropped dramatically and the Thunderbirds were losing their identity as a Cheektowaga organization. We were at a crossroads ..... rebuild or dissolve the organization!!!
2004 THE REBIRTH OF THE THUNDERBIRDS!!!