Philadelphia Gryphons Hosted Players from Gay & Inclusive Clubs for Colonial Cup Tournament

Fri May 19, 2017, 9:00 am to Sat May 20, 2017, 8:00 pm

Gay & Inclusive Rugby Clubs play in Colonial Cup Tournament

The Philadelphia Gryphons Rugby Football Club, the city’s gay and inclusive men's team, hosted nine rugby clubs from around the country for the second biennial Colonial Cup, held on May 19-20 at Edgely Field in Fairmount Park. Nearly 300 rugby players from around the eastern U.S. participated in the tournament, which strives to strengthen the growing network of gay and inclusive rugby teams across the globe.

The teams who participated in the Colonial Cup included: Atlanta Bucks, Baltimore Flamingos, Boston Ironsides, Columbus Coyotes, DC Scandals, Gotham Knights, Madison Minotaurs, Nashville Grizzlies, and Washington Renegades. 

"It's an honor to host these players for a weekend of competition and camaraderie. Rugby is, at its core, a sport that unites its players across cultures and borders, regardless of age, race, and in our case, sexual orientation," said Gryphons President Ray Fritz. "This [tournament] serves to show that we are all brothers on the pitch and off the pitch, no matter how intense the competition, at the end of the day."

In addition to the tournament itself, players and fans were welcome to participate in a variety of social events over the course of the weekend, including a Meet & Greet on Thursday evening, a Saturday evening bar crawl, and Sunday closing brunch.

The tournament and social events were all meant to continue the solidarity among these teams, who are all members of the International Gay Rugby (IGR) association. 

Colonial Cup Tournament History

The Colonial Cup was first held in May 2015 with five teams traveling to Philadelphia to compete. Since then, the event has grown to serve as the regional eastern North American IGR event on off-years of the Bingham Cup, the biennial international gay and inclusive rugby tournament named in honor of fallen 9/11 hero and San Francisco Fog player Mark Bingham.

The Colonial Cup, along with a Western North American regional tournament in Denver held this year, will help determine U.S. and Canadian seeding for pool play tiers at the next Bingham Cup, which takes place in Amsterdam in 2018.

As a member of the Mid-Atlantic Rugby Union and Eastern Pennsylvania Rugby Union (EPRU), the Philadelphia Gryphons’ main objective is to compete at the highest level – but without losing focus on its core mission. As Philadelphia’s sole gay and inclusive men’s rugby team, the Gryphons are committed to building community and encouraging tolerance, all through the sport of rugby.  As the club continues to grow in both in membership and presence, its members are extending their reach beyond the rugby pitch and are working closely within the Philadelphia’s LGBT organizations and resources to drive social activism and engender acceptance.