Our Inhouse Recreational program is open to players of all skill levels and experience. Registration is open and ongoing, even after the season starts, just click on the REGISTER tab above and follow the instructions.​ We generally accept players 3 through 13 but please check the Age Group Requirements chart below for the current program year to confirm. All age groups with the exception of U-4 practice once per week on either Tuesday or Wednesday evening for an hour. Practices are led by professional youth development trainers from NY Red Bulls Academy. Games are held on Saturday afternoons at George Fischer Middle School.

How do age groups work?
Carmel United utilizes US Soccer’s guidelines for our young Inhouse age groups (see US Soccer Federation Age Group Requirements below). These are the standard age groups across the United States and correspond with travel age groups. The number of teams formed for each age group will be based on the number of players registered and the number of adult volunteers. No teams will be formed without adult volunteers. Requests for a player's team placement will be honored only in cases of special need that can be verified. Coaches and assistants will automatically have their children on their teams.

My child is 5 years old. Why is he/she in the U7 age group?
As stated, Carmel United follows US Soccer’s birth year guidelines which is simple in theory but can seem confusing at times. The birth year part is simple… all players born in the same year fall into the same age group… but how that is applied can get confusing because the soccer year technically runs from August through July, which spans a portion of two different calendar years. The age group in which a player falls is based on the year in which the soccer year ENDS. If you register for the Fall, you will be registering in the year PRIOR to the year in which it ends. The age group your child falls into is the age your child will be by the end of that NEXT calendar year. If your child has a birthday later in the year, they could be two years younger than their age group at the time of registration. Players with birthdays between September and December would notice this. Example:

  • You register in July for the Fall 2021 season. Your child is currently 5 years old but will turn 6 in November.
  • The soccer season (year) that you are registering for runs from August 2021 through July 2022. 
  • The year the season ends is 2022. Your child will turn 7 in November of that year.
  • Your child is a U7 player even though he/she is 5 when you are registering and will still only be 6 when the Spring season ends.

What can I expect in each age group?

  • At U4, there are no teams or team games. Every player has a ball and they are led through a series of fun games/activities that help teach fundamental soccer skills while keeping the children entertained and motivated. You should not be expecting a soccer game. 
  • For U5/6, we typically create 4-8 teams of 5-8 players and employ 4v4 games on a 20x30 yard field with 3-foot Pugg goals (no goalies).
  • For U7/8, we keep the game 4v4 but increase the field to 30x50 yards utilizing larger 5-foot Bownet goals (still no goalkeeper).
  • At U9/10, we move over to the modified soccer field where we typically play 7v7 (6+GK) with 12-foot goals. We typically have 2 or 3 coaches for this age group who will split the group into two teams each week. This way the teams change week-to-week.
  • U11+ operates the same way as U9/10 in terms of team formation each week. This age group may stay on the modified field or we may move them to the large soccer field and increase the number of players on the field depending on the number of players that season.

We do not keep score or keep track of wins/losses. Those things are detrimental to player development which is the primary focus at this age.

Why 4v4?
The 4v4 philosophy promotes technical development. This smaller concept is easier for children to grasp and is more compatible with their abilities. 4v4 still provides all the elements of a real soccer game… dribbling, passing, and shooting… but without some of the confusion. 4v4 also provides the minimum numbers needed for the parts that make up a soccer game… attacking, providing width, and defending.

By using the 4v4 approach, players’ skills improve because they get far more touches on the ball, which is the key to development. The emphasis on the basics… dribbling (control), passing and shooting… provides the fundamental building blocks of soccer. It’s also fun for the players. They are all involved in attacking and defending.

What do volunteer coaches do?
We employ professional youth trainers from NY Red Bulls who work with each age group (except U4) during the week. They focus on the “teaching” part. Games are where players get the freedom to learn by experimenting. The primary responsibility of our volunteer coaches is to organize and keep things fun. Before the game, they make sure the field and goals are set up, if necessary. During the game, they make sure all players are getting to play fairly, subbing players in and out while exposing them to different positions on the field, and basically keeping things orderly. Most importantly, they cheer and provide positive reinforcement to all the players! Soccer experience is NOT required to be an Inhouse coach! In fact, some of the best coaches may have no soccer experience at all. 

Why can I only register for Fall and Spring combined or Spring only? Why can't I register for Fall only?
The soccer season always runs from Fall through Spring. When you register for our program in the Fall, you are registered for the full year and automatically get both the Fall and following Spring season. You can choose not to play in the Spring if that is your preference, but you are still registered and the fee is not reduced. When you register in the Spring, the fee is slightly lower because you've missed the Fall and are only getting the Spring season. You do not get the following Fall season because that starts a new program year. 

Why isn't the Spring season that much cheaper than playing Fall and Spring combined?

Your fees go towards registration, insurance, and a uniform. Whether you play both Fall and Spring, or just Spring, those costs are the same. It isn't any cheaper to register you, insure you, or purchase a uniform in the Spring than it is in the Fall. Another cost is trainers. While we utilize Red Bulls trainers at our practices in both Fall and Spring, we use them about 60% more in Spring because we lose daylight in Fall and only run training sessions for about 6 weeks of the season while we have training sessions for the full 10 weeks in Spring. In other words, it costs us more to run the program in Spring than it does in Fall. We keep the fees as inexpensive as we possibly can.

What if I can't make practices or games?

Our Inhouse program is very informal. Attendance is not taken and there are no consequences for missing events. Some people may not be able to make the practices during the week. That's not a problem. If you can only make the games on Saturdays or even if you prefer to only attend the practices during the week but not the games, that is all perfectly fine. In the case of the latter, we do ask that you let us know ahead of time so that we can form teams appropriately. There is no price adjustment for what you do/don't attend and fees are not prorated for registering after the season begins.

Inhouse Fees

  • U-4 age group: $95 includes both Fall and Spring season when registering for the Fall; includes Spring season only when registering for the Spring
  • U-5/6 age group: $150 includes both Fall and Spring season when registering for the Fall; $125 for Spring season only
  • U-7+ age group:  $185 includes both Fall and Spring season when registering for the Fall; $145 for Spring season only
  • $15 per player late fee will be imposed if registering after July 31st for the Fall season and after March 15th for the Spring season
  • You will receive $50 in raffle tickets. If you opt to sell those tickets, you keep the money which lowers your overall cost by $50.
  • Fees are not prorated for registering after the season starts.
  • Refunds will only be considered if requested at least 3 weeks prior to the start of the season

US Soccer Federation Age Group Requirements

Player's Birth YearFall 2023/Spring 2024 Age GroupFall 2024/Spring 2025 Age GroupFall 2025/Spring 2026 Age GroupFall 2026/Spring 2027 Age Group




Spring Schedule

PRACTICES (start 4/9)

Weeknights at Patterson Park

Games (start 4/6)
Saturdays at GFMS
Age GroupDayTimeTimeSchedule
U4N/AN/A11:00 AMU4 Schedule
U5/6Wednesday5:30 PM1:00 PMU5/6 Boys/U5/6 Girls
U7/8Tuesday5:30 PM2:30 PMU7/8 Boys/U7/8 Girls
U9/10Wednesday6:30 PM12:30 or 2:00 PMU9/10 Schedule
U11+Tuesday6:30 PM9:30 or 11:00 AMU11+ Schedule

GFMS Field Layout Map

All games are played on Saturdays at George Fischer Middle School beginning:

  • FALL Season: the first weekend after Labor Day
  • SPRING Season: the first or second weekend of April

There are 9-10 scheduled games each season. Canceled games will not be rescheduled. There are no games Columbus Day weekend or Memorial Day weekend. The times listed for games are game start times... every age group starts at the same time each week. Please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled start time. 

Practices are held at 
Patterson Veterans Memorial Town Park (aka Patterson Park) and will be led by professional soccer trainers from the NY Red Bulls Youth Development organization. Practices begin:

  • FALL Season: the Tuesday after Labor Day at 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM depending on age group
  • SPRING Season: the first Tuesday in April OR the Tuesday after the first game, TBD, at 5:30 PM and 6:30 PM depending on age group

Please abide by the parking rules at Patterson Park. Only Patterson town residents with the appropriate parking permit affixed to their car window are allowed to park in the main lot (gravel). Everybody else must park in the parking lot just past the basketball courts (grass). Please see the parking map for specifics.

Emails will be sent out in the event of any cancellations or changes.

Equipment Needed for All Practices and Games

  • Soccer ball
    • ​Size 3 for U-4 through U-8 age groups
    • Size 4 for U-9 and above
    • U-13 players can use a size 5 at practice if they like
  • Shin guards are required in order to participate -- should be worn UNDER socks
  • Cleats are not required but are highly recommended
  • Water​