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Photos: Navy Football Kicks Off Season With Fan Fest

The 2012 Navy football team signed autographs and posed for photos with fans during the academy's annual fan fest on Saturday in Annapolis.

Hundreds of football fans decked out in their blue and gold flocked to the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Saturday for Fan Fest.

"It's a small token of our appreciation," head football coach Ken Niumatalolo said. "Just a little thing we can do to pay back the fans and the community that is so supportive of our team."

Niumatalolo signed autographs, posed for pictures and chatted about the upcoming season, which he said will "hopefully be a good one." His staff and the entire team were on the field too interacting with fans both big and small.

Center Bradyn Heap called the two hour meet and greet fun. He said, "It's good to interact with the fans on a personal basis. We get to see who is coming to watch our games."

Some of the younger fans seemed more interested in the bounce houses and balloon animals than the players. There were long lines at both.

Mike Betsch brought his 3-year-old son Andrew Betsch to the field to "cheer on our team for the upcoming year." The pair sweated in the hot summer sun while they waited in a long line so that Andrew could take home a balloon animal shaped like Elmo.

The next chance for Navy football fans to scope out the 2012 team will be at the annual Blue-Gold BBQ and Scrimmage on Saturday, Aug. 11 at noon. 

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