Stephen Garden can almost remember what it’s like to go to a youth
soccer tournament and not have to work.
However, attending an event as just a spectator might seem like a
distant memory in the wake of a tournament Garden is coordinating in
Today and Sunday at four local venues, 78 boys’ and girls’ teams
from across Southern California will take part in the Cartoon
Classic, with matches taking place at Luther Burbank Middle School,
Jordan Middle School, Ralph Foy Park and Stevenson Elementary School.
“I have two daughters who play soccer, and they will be taking
part in the tournament,” said Garden, who is the event’s director.
“But I’ll tell you, it was a lot easier when I could go to their
[matches] and just watch. With this tournament, it has been a lot of
work getting things together.
Sponsored by the Burbank Region 254 American Youth Soccer
Organization, the tournament is a big fund-raising event.
“Along with a tournament we have in the winter, this will be our
biggest fund-raiser of the year,” Garden said. “We didn’t do too well
with the other tournament, so we’re hoping to make a little money
with this one.”
By naming the event the Cartoon Classic, Garden said the event’s
coordinators are hoping to attract some of the city’s high-profile
businesses as possible sponsors.
“The name comes from the fact that a lot of cartoons are made here
in Burbank,” Garden said. “We are hoping that maybe Disney or Warner
Bros. will want to jump on board and hopefully be sponsors in the
Garden said he is expecting some talented teams to grace the local
field this weekend. Squads from as far away as Paso Robles, San Luis
Obispo and San Bernardino will be playing.
The locals should also be well-represented.
“I know we have a boys’ under-14 team that is very good,” Garden
said. “And there is also a girls’ under-10 team that I’ve heard a lot
of good things about. So we should have some pretty good teams.”