How many times can spectators witness more than 200 touchdowns scored? The barrage of touchdowns by ecstatic kids from the Hemet Unified School District’s special-needs and autism programs begins after 9:15 a.m. opening ceremonies.
The Super Bowl-time tradition in Hemet was created by Matt Kraemer, who now is principal at Idyllwild School. Kraemer was inspired by an ESPN movie about special-needs students experiencing the thrill of scoring TDs on a football field. Kraemer began small, with the students at Little Lake, and the event has grown considerably.
At the Super Kids Bowl, students take the field with varsity football players. They are handed the ball so they can run for a score to much fanfare. A school band plays a fight song. Photographs are taken. Cheerleaders cheer.
The Super Kids Bowl has been held at Hemet and West Valley high schools. This year, it moves to Tahquitz High’s deluxe field that has a stadium atmosphere because it was built in a canyon. Kraemer said spectators are welcome to attend the happy event. It is exciting to see the thrilled kids score. It’s impressive to see the students and adults working with them.
Kraemer said the touchdowns should go on for two hours or more following the 9:15 a.m. start. Tahquitz High is in west Hemet by Cawston Avenue, just south of Esplanade Avenue.