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June 27, 2014

Football association returning to Rec Department

Volunteer meeting slated for parents

MILLEDGEVILLE — The Baldwin County Commissioners unanimously approved a return to volunteer sports associations at the recreation department.

The department wants parents to buy back into youth sports.

Football's new association is an early focus.

Recreation Director Bill McNair hopes anybody even thinking about football in this county will attend an upcoming interest meeting at 6 p.m. Monday.

Baldwin County Recreation Football volunteer Dexter Ricks looks forward to bringing the association back.

“I think it's a good move. You have to have parental buy in,” Ricks said. “When you actually say this is your program, hopefully they will take it and run with it. I'm not sure that has happened in the last few years.”

The recreation department took over the financing, operation and development of youth leagues from volunteer parent associations in 2011. The Old Capital Soccer League is the only county sport running itself after the previous commissioners granted that concession in summer 2012.

Soccer and football are the first scheduled recreation department sports to fall under the “tweaked” association policy setup.

Ricks said parents acted in a booster club capacity the last three years.

The football program needs a lot of operational help, according to Ricks.

“We are trying to get everybody actively involved,” he said.

Football association committees can use all skill sets.

“Sometimes it's just being eyes and ears to help out with everyday recreation events,” McNair said. “We are looking for more people to volunteer in the league.”

Monday’s meeting will include discussion on the new setup, Heads Up Football and upcoming football league expenses among other important topics.

Parents will learn how the associations work from top to bottom.

Fundraising is a necessity because the league registration fees don't cover everything the coaches want to do for the young players.

“If we say it costs $100 this year, they will know exactly what that goes to,” Ricks said. “We just have to educate parents more. We need their help.”

Football registration starts today and runs through Aug. 15.

The county football program will offer free camps July 15 and July 17 at 6 p.m.

County recreation provides a foundation for middle and high school athletics success.

Local stakeholders think this association is a vital first step.

“Be a part of the solution. The more people involved the better off we will be,” McNair said.

The meeting will be at the Walter B. Williams gym building at 59 Ga. Highway 22 West.

 

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