Women’s touch football has been played in Eastern Canada since the 1970’s. In early 1983 Touch Football Canada contacted Touch Football BC and asked them to consider starting a women’s league in BC. In the inaugural year, 16 women’s teams registered for league play in the Lower Mainland, along with another 3 leagues throughout the province. Mardi Gras’ touch football journey had begun. After only one year of learning the game, techniques, and strategies, they won the 1984 provincials. They represented BC in Ottawa at Touch Bowl (national championships), finishing third. On home territory in 1986 at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby, they went undefeated and won their first National title. The dynasty had begun. From 1986 to 1992, Mardi Gras won 7 consecutive Provincial Championships and were Canadian Champions six consecutive years, from 1986-1991. They were runners up at the 1992 Touch Bowl.
The team was composed of very athletic and talented women, all having achieved high accomplishments in other sports such as basketball, soccer, and softball. They brought their foundation of teamwork and dedication to their new sport, Touch Football. This shared focus and desire to be the best very quickly transformed them into the best Women’s Touch Football team in the country.
It is fair to say the Mardi Gras team was passionate about football and loved to win, but they were also one of the most liked and respected teams in the league. They helped grow the league; coaching other teams, and volunteering at introductory women’s touch football camps put on by Touch Football BC.
The path paved by teams like the Mardi Gras Gals has been influential in promoting the continued growth of female participation in football at all levels, including touch, flag, and even tackle.
Mardi Gras Team Records 1984-1992
Victoria Tournament Champions: 1984
Kelowna May Bowl Champions: 1984-1991
BC Provincial Champions: 1984, 1986-1992
National Champions: 1986-1991