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Forum staff reports, Published January 15 2013

New Fargo-Moorhead semi-pro football team to hold tryouts

MOORHEAD – James Kern, an assistant director for a semi-professional football team in Brainerd, Minn., is trying to start up another team in Fargo-Moorhead.

The first tryouts for the Minnesota Lumberjacks, which will compete in a four-team division of the United National Football League, will be held at noon Saturday at Snap Fitness in Moorhead.

Kern said the tryout will be low impact and held mostly to gauge the interest of area players.

Kern said the team will be an extension of the Brainerd Lumberjacks, which play a spring season in the Midwest Premier Football League. The Minnesota Lumberjacks are scheduled to play 10 games in late summer and early fall in a division that includes teams from Minot, N.D.; Mankato, Minn. and Minneapolis.

Kern’s Brainerd team won two titles in the last four years in a league that includes five other teams from Minnesota. He said by adding a fall schedule, the teams could become eligible to compete for a national championship.

Kern said he is still in the process of finding a home field for the new Minnesota Lumberjacks.

This isn’t the first time someone has tried to start a semi-pro football team in Fargo-Moorhead. Dale Heffron, a Willmar, Minn., businessman, was the owner of the Fargo-Moorhead Liberty, which won a Northern Power Football League championship in the spring of 2008.

One year later, the team folded. It was reported Heffron owed tens of thousands of dollars to a number of local businesses.