Northwest High School football player turned NFL athlete Tim Barnes is hosting his “Tim Barnes Football Camp 2016” this weekend at Smith-Cotton High School in Sedalia. Barnes, who has played with the St. Louis Rams since 2012, is maintaining a Missouri-based camp despite the team’s relocation to Los Angeles.

“Moving with the team is just one thing you have to do,” Barnes said. “Last year, we went through a free agency, so it could have been any other team. Once St. Louis said they were moving, we knew we were moving somewhere. After weighing the options, we just decided that was going to be the best team for us again.”

Embracing his Missouri roots, Barnes developed a football camp for child athletes from kindergarten through twelfth grade. This is the third non-consecutive year for the camp.

“I try to get current and former NFL players, along with guys I played with at Mizzou,” Barnes said. “We moved it to Sedalia and we’re excited about that. They have that awesome new stadium and all of the facilities over there. We’re really looking forward to it.”

Children in grades kindergarten through sixth are meeting from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, July 8 at Smith-Cotton High School. Child athletes in grades seventh through twelfth will meet from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, July 9.

“We are trying to avoid the heat,” Barnes said, referencing the camp times. “Friday is a little later start time. When we were planning this a few months ago, we knew it had the potential to be hot and we didn’t want the kids out there in that.”

Pricing for the camp was $30 per athlete before July 1. It has now bumped up to $35. Child athletes can be registered the day of their age-respective camp.

“Paying the day of will be easiest,” Barnes said. “We’ll have registration and everything there. Of course, the kids will get t-shirts. We’ll have guests and there will be time for autographs before and after. They’ll be able to hang out with the players. Every year that we’ve done this, all of the guys have been super gracious with the kids and it’s been a lot of fun.”

Guest athletes are still being assembled for the event. Barnes refrained from providing names since some of the guests are still confirming their participation.

“I’ve got a few guys that I’m still waiting on,” Barnes said. “I do know that we have a Chiefs player coming down. I don’t want to name names and get anyone’s hopes up.”

Barnes was inspired to host a football camp after attending camps in Missouri during his youth.

“What I did was I went to Mizzou sponsored camps,” Barnes said. “So, we’d go up to Columbia with other high school teams. Those were a little more team-oriented. This will be more of getting the kids out and doing drills. Especially with the younger kids, our main goal is to make sure they’re having fun and then try to teach them something basic. The older kids will learn a little bit more about technique and things like that.

Barnes started playing football in third grade and realizes the need to inspire young athletes.

“At that time, we had the Sedalia Youth Football League,” Barnes said. “We had a good group of guys that all played together clear through high school. That same group played every sport, so we played together all year. It was a lot of fun. I’m looking forward to all of the kids and other football fans that swing by Smith-Cotton.”

For questions, contact Travis Jobe at (660) 287-6483.