Beeville Sports Hall of Famer Ken Jefferson wrapped up the 17th and final edition of his Lil Iron Man Football Camp Thursday night at the youth football complex inside Veterans Memorial Park.

Jefferson hosted 83 youngsters in this year’s camp, which he said will be his final year running the camp.

“It’s kind of a bittersweet deal, but somebody else has to carry the torch,” he said about hanging up his hat as the camp director. “... I keep coming back for the kids, but it’s time for somebody else to carry this torch.”

The longtime youth coach couldn’t pick out one particular moment as his favorite, but did say his biggest camp was probably the most memorable for him.

“The one year, we had 116 kids. That was a great year. That year we had 116, we had two teams that won their Super Bowls. That was a memorable year.”

Jefferson said the numbers for this year’s camp were about average for the camp, but that it drew a lot of new faces.

“We got a lot of young players out this year. And a lot of talented players as well,” he said. “For a lot of them, it’s their first year coming out for football.

“They looked good and they were very energetic.”

The start of the youth football season is just a few weeks away, so the camp gave this year’s coaches a jump on the season.

“It helps a lot. A lot of our coaches are out here, so they get to see their kids early before we even get started,” Jefferson said about what the camp does for the youth football program. “It gives the kids that week of conditioning prior to our first week of conditioning.

“... It gives us a jump on the season.”