Friday night football is more than just a game to the Northfield community. This event is the one night a week where people can step away from their busy lives and interact with the community. Back when I was at home I remember every Friday night my friends and I all got together and watched the Trevians play a rival high school. During the season, the games had an attendance of 1,200-1,600, but once playoffs rolled around the games attendance jumped to 4,000 (Chicago Public League Sports Blog, 2014).
In Northfield, there are a lot of differences between community members. These differences could be as simple as a preference for the Chicago cubs versus the Chicago White Sox, or it can be as complicated as personal relationships or class levels. Despite these differences, everyone knows that we can all get together for one night during the week and cheer for the same team.
After the season has passed, you start to realize that the differences that you had with certain people at the beginning of the year are no longer present, which can lead to brand new friendships. This all ties with the concept of bridging capital. Bridging capital is bringing together people or groups who did not previously know each other with the goal of establishing new social ties to provide new information and access additional social networks (Hamshaw, Slide 18). This is shown through Friday night football games by how people in the community develop friendships with people that they would never have been friends with without the presence of this strong commonality.
Chicago Public League Sports Blog (December 22, 2014). This is how Football looks like from Down South…. Part 2. Retrieved from http://neilski.typepad.com/wwwlanetechfancom_blog/2014/12/this-is-how-football-looks-like-down-southpart-2-1.html