Accentuate the Positive! Looking back at this fall

In this season of life, where we are all facing challenges and unknowns, it is easy to find the negative. As we near the end of the fall soccer season, I’d like to, in the words of Bing Crosby, “accentuate the positive!”

We have so much to celebrate as we look at the last few months. Many thanks to parents, volunteers, players, and staff for going above and beyond, being flexible, and playing their part this fall. Here are a few of the highlights:

We played soccer!

On the recreational side, we had nearly 700 kids from ages 3-14 practice and play a fall soccer season this year. Though the days were more spread out, the fields looked different, and there were new rules, kids had a chance to play.

A huge shout out to every one of our volunteer coaches for making this happen. THANK YOU VOLUNTEER COACHES!

In addition, this fall season would not have been possible without a partnership with Mid Valley Soccer Club, who had their board members manning the check-in tents and helped with field preparation all season long.

Thank you as well to the parents for their understanding and flexibility with the guidelines we were under this fall. My heart is filled with gratitude and joy as I write about this.

We played games!

For our year-round programs, not only did our kids continue to train this fall, but through a massive effort from staff, parents, managers, and volunteers, we played games.

Our Director of Coaching, Joe Wentworth, reached out to other teams and club directors to schedule over 150 games for our U11-14 teams. Our High School teams competed within Oregon Youth Soccer’s offering. And our Pre-Competitive teams played games largely through an organic partnership with Albany and Corvallis. Our club has played more games than any other club in Oregon this fall. 

This has been the most unique fall full of games – with many of them having to be postponed/changed due to changing guidelines around field usage, COVID precautions, or simply complexities in communications unique to the time. We are also incredibly blessed to have our complex that we were able to modify to serve the kids and stay within the parameters of the OHA for this season.

I commend our entire club for the flexibility and commitment to giving our kids a platform to compete – one of our 4 C’s!

More than Soccer

The fall hasn’t been perfect. But, there is power we all lay aside our differences and say, “Our kids need this in this time. What do we need to do to make this happen?” 

Matthew McConaughey said, “The soccer ball is the greatest invitation in the world.” You don’t need to even say hello. You roll the ball out, and the connections happen.

On the field, I’ve seen the benefits of positive athletic opportunity for kids on an emotional and mental level. I’ve had countless parents come to me to say how much of a difference getting to play soccer is for their kid in this time.

So, in the midst of a world where many things may be outside of our control or discouraging, we accentuate the positives and count our blessings for the beautiful fall season we’ve had.

And can you believe our luck with the weather this year? 😉

Collin

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