Leadership Team Meeting - Monday, July 1st,2019 at 5:30pm - Room 1 at Odell Weeks
In attendance were Joyce Noland, Nancy Racki, Linda Blake, Diane Voss, Barb Burns, Barb Dellamora, George Carr, Ron Nelson, Nancy Vermilye, Mo Garcia, Grace Vance, Faith Loeb and Marissa Evans.
Joyce called the meeting to order.
- The Round Robin went very well. The medals were nice. There was a good turnout except for Men 3.0 category. Perhaps because most of the competitive 3.0 men have moved on to 3.5? We don't have many 3.0 men signed up for the tournament either. Joyce suggested that maybe the 3.5 division needs to be expanded.
- About reserved courts on Saturdays when OW is closed, there was a large number of players that showed to play. A suggestion was made that perhaps there should be no reserved courts when OW is closed. Other than July 4th, Odell Weeks is open all Saturdays in July and August.
- A vote was taken regarding limiting the number of courts that one single person can reserve. The leadership team voted not to limit the reservations. There was some comment about how to handle this issue fairly and the consensus was to be polite and mindful of other players. If you have reserved a court and some of your players don't show up, invite players to share the reserved court and be more careful of how many courts you reserve in the future.
- The RR made $540 so an account has been opened for Aiken Pickleball. This money was used to cover several expenses for the RR: balls, tape, medals, energy bars, bananas and clipboards ($298.14) The remainder will be used for tape, maybe a net and additional expenses we incur at the Gregg Park facilities. Mo explained that tape will have to come off in October due to an event at Gregg Park and the courts will have to be re-taped ( $10 per roll. 1 ½ rolls per court) and he gave us net pricing. George said we have new balls ready to be available as soon as a shelf is built at OW.
Players reps for next year ( starting in September)
- Joyce appreciated the great work the reps have done and are doing.
- Bev Edwards, Nancy Racki. Barb Dellamora and Grace Vance and leaving their positions but there have been a lot of new people committed to take their place. Also, a large number of reps and members of the leadership team and staying for next year.
- There was also conversation regarding rating. Ron suggested that the machine be used for feeding during rating to help out. Mo commented that Ann in North Augusta has stopped rating because it has gotten too complicated. Mo pointed out that our rating system is very much like the USPA and that after rated here, you shouldn't have any problems competing in any RR or tournament outside of Aiken. An additional comment was made by Mo regarding differences between low and high. This is done to protect court designation for the most part. If you are a 3.5 low or a 3.5 high you are still a 3.5. Mo went on to say that when competing, there will be some people who intentionally will misleading regarding their rating and unfortunately it is difficult to guard against that.
New leadership team member ( starting in September)
- Nancy Vermilye is stepping down and George Carr is taking her place for next year.
Play Eustis Park at 8 AM
- Nancy V. said that people are playing at Eustis Park at 8:00 am every morning. The shaded courts make it very nice place to play.
- Mo suggested making paddles they can call their own. Maybe involving some artwork from the kids at Helping Hands. Grace suggested perhaps contacting sponsors to help with the cost. Having their own paddles would give them their own identity.
Should we become an official club - revisited
- Joyce stated that we are not a club even though we behave very much like one. Sometimes we have to deal with unusual issues that have to be handled differently like for example the order of the medals for Aiken Pickleball tournaments and RR. We just ordered 150 (50 of each type) but only 30 were used at the Gregg Park RR so we have 120 medals that have been pre-paid but we have to pay back. So how do we deal with this?
- Joyce said that OW has encouraged us to become a club. Mo explained that as a club – non profit we would have access to grant money that would help with tournament and round robin expenses, like buying medals. We would have to charge a minimal club fee.
- Nancy V. pointed out that there was also a downside to becoming a club. There would be a great deal of paperwork. Mo said that we look like a club, act like a club but we haven't gone downtown to register... once we register, it gets complicated. We have to keep up with statement, disciplinary actions, legal issues, etc...
- Instead of becoming a club, Mo suggested we can consider asking the member to make a donation for operating expenses. Afterall, we get free rating which in other places isn't free In Boston, you pay $25 to get rated). Joyce suggested a minimal fee of $5 per year.
- Linda suggested we have a social and discuss this choice. Barb and Nancy looked into possible dates for our next social in the near future.
- Diane suggested that part of the money collected for league could go towards operating expenses. We do have a few expenses: reservations for the outdoor courts (city charges us some minimal fee), the website (currently privately funded), socials expenses. We do have quite a few percs with Aiken Pickleball and at the meeting everyone felt that the players would be willing to contribute. Some of the percs we have are: free rating, free outdoor play, website, socials, balls and equipment, availability of pros, clinics and lessons (even though clinics and lessons include a fee).
Explanation of court monitor positions.
- Jeff and Michelle have requested that this information be included in the newsletter and minutes.
- a) What a Court Monitor Does:
i) Escort the players to the court.
ii) Time the warm-ups and time outs.
iii) Write down the final score as reported by the players.
iv) Turn the score sheet into the desk on the gym 1 stage.
b) What a Court Monitor Does Not Do:
i) Keep score.
ii) Make line calls
Input from player reps
- Faith asked about the possibility that asking OW about using gym 1 instead of half of Gym 2 for Wrestling. Nancy V. and Joyce confirm that it is not a possibility that it is what it is. Grace suggested to Faith to encourage the people who complain about the noise or lack of courts to think positively and focus on what we have. Grace pointed out that we are very lucky to have the facilities that we have.
- Joyce pointed out that we could pursue other facilities also. Mo said that Houndslake is turning 2 of their tennis courts into pickleball courts. Also, Gregg Park is looking into acquiring an old school in Graniteville. Mo said that school has an amazing gym.
- Linda asked about making an event where you do not have to have a partner. Joyce said that the survey after the RR was all over the place. They are considering rotating the formats. The next RR at either OW or Gregg Park in Oct or early Nov will likely be that format (sign up with no partner) but we are never going to find a format that suits everyone. The best solution is to rotate and if they do not have a partner, offer to find one for those tournaments or RRs.
- Linda also asked about how we can play within the age group not just rating. Joyce said that unfortunately if they don’t have enough people in a single age category they are forced to combine ages. Grace offered a solution – encourage people in your age group rating to sign up for any given event.
- Grace asked about clinics. What kind of clinics do people want? She has noticed that more people prefer lessons to clinics. Joyce said we do need at least 1 beginner clinic per month. Nancy R. commented that she preferred lessons to clinics because you can work on what you want with the people you like at the same level. Faith agreed, perhaps more lessons and the 1 beginner clinic is the solution.
Next Meeting to be held on Monday, August 5th, 2019 at 5:30pm at Odell Weeks.