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Students tour the Wilson Football Factory

March 13, 2019

Posted in Events

On Wednesday, February 13, TRECA Digital Academy students toured the Wilson Football Factory in Ada, OH.

The factory opened in 1955 and is the only dedicated football factory in the world! Since 1941, every NFL game ball, including the Super Bowl game ball, has been made at the Wilson Football Factory. The factory employs about 120 workers, and they produce as many as 2500 footballs a day. That’s 700,000 footballs a year! The NFL uses approximately 25,000 of those.

On the tour, students saw firsthand how footballs are made. First, students visited the graphics department where designers create a vision for each new football. Students even got a sneak peek at the design of next year’s Super Bowl football. Then, they entered the manufacturing facility where they witnessed the football-making process from start to finish. First, individuals panels are cut from pebbled leather that has tiny Ws on it for proof of authenticity. Then, graphics are applied to the panels, which are sewn together inside out. Once they’re are sewn, the balls are turned right-side-out with the help of a steam box to soften the leather. From there, a bladder is inserted into the footballs, and they are laced and molded. Each football is put through a detailed inspection process to ensure it is game-ready! At the end of the tour, students had the opportunity to purchase a football and sign their name on a football hide that Wilson has hanging in their facility.

Thank you to the Wilson Football Factory for a wonderful tour! We learned so much about the football-making process!

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