Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Making Do With What You Have

Red Mind in a Blue State wrote in his blog:

“I helped draft an agreement several years ago, a partnership between the District and the local soccer league. We let them take one of our fields and spend about $20,000 to upgrade it. Our agreement provided that school teams and programs ALWAYS got first preference, but that otherwise they had exclusive use. They renovated the field, and maintained it.

Win. Win. The District got a premiere field for the High School soccer teams; the District didn't pay a penny; and the soccer league got an "A" field for its program.

I think this should be expanded. Instead of requiring youth sports to pay a fee, let them participate in the renovations. More importantly, train their members and certify them in field maintenance--and contract with the youth league, for a dollar a year, to provide the ongoing maintenance.”

There is something so plain and simple hidden in the wisdom shown by this example. I would hope that folks involved in School District policy, folks involved in community planning and especially those involved with organizing extra curicular sports for our youth will take notes on this.

I can remember my dad getting together with several other grown ups to build us a baseball field on some land; I think it belonged to the utility company, which was set aside as a right of way. As I recall they even helped to install some telephone poles so that we could play at night. The field maintanence was a matter of pride for everyone who played on it or who had kids involved with baseball. There was never any vandalizm and no trash left in the dugouts. The utility company still had their right of way if they had to move heavy equipment and it didn’t cost them anything to approve the use of a barren piece of land for us to play baseball. It was, as Tony has suggested, a Win Win for everyone. Thank you Tony!

Now all you have to do is get your comment section to work for me and I will nominate you for an award.

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