Dear WCGS Family,
My name is Cary Edwards, and I am writing today to introduce myself as the new President of the Association. I am excited to have been elected to the role by the board and look forward to continuing building the legacy that has been created by my predecessors. I would like to thank our outgoing President, Charles Bartley, for his tremendous time and effort on behalf of our park over the last few years. If you see him around the park, please give him a big heartfelt, "Thank You," for his service.
Since coming to the park in 2007, I have watched two of our daughters play through their high school years and graduate from the program. Additionally, I have a 12-year-old and twin 8-year-olds currently participating in the program. West Cobb Girls Softball has become very important to our family and I, along with our current Board, will work as hard as we can to continue to provide the best league possible for our girls.
The mission for WCGS is to promote love of the game, skill development, self-esteem, teamwork, respect and good sportsmanship through a fun, safe and positive playing environment. Our #1 goal however, is to have your daughter play softball with us long term and be eligible for our scholarship program when she graduates high school. Obviously, for many various reasons this will not happen with every girl but regardless we will endeavor to achieve this objective with every one of them.
One of my first responsibilities after being elected this summer was to read through the scholarship applications and I can tell you unequivocally that the number one word used in all the essays was "FAMILY" and second was "FRIENDSHIPS". Unlike some sports, a girl can play at West Cobb from the time they are 4 until they graduate high school, and because of this our park has always had a real community and family feel to it. One of my goals will be to continue to foster the family atmosphere of the park and create some events that will bring us even closer as a community. I hope when you see these events come across your email or Facebook that you will take part in them. These events might include a community picnic/movie night at the park, or WCGS night at a Braves game just to name a couple. Not only would I love to hear your feedback on these ideas but would also welcome suggestions for other things and events we can do within our park to serve our community.
For those of you who have been around awhile you will remember several years back we switched from parents working one concession shift a season to paid concession stand workers. While this was nice for the girls who got to earn a little money it put a bit of a financial strain on our budget. More importantly, in my opinion, it took away some of the community spirit in the park. Having worked many 4 hour concession stand shifts, I can tell you that having parents work side by side as a team for 4 hours builds a lot of camaraderie as well as friendships that can last long after a softball season. Due to the financial strain that paid workers put on us and our desire to maintain affordable registration we have found it necessary to go back to the parent system. I hope you will not look at this as a negative or a burden but as doing your part to serve the community, to help maintain affordability and most importantly to get to know your fellow WCGS family members….who knows you might just meet your next best friend while serving a cheeseburger combo.
I would also like to take a moment and mention that we have added an equipment exchange section to the website. We all have a garage full of old equipment that someone could probably use so we started the exchange to make it easier for you all to de-clutter your homes and to find a good deal on used equipment. I hope you all will take advantage of it.
In an effort to allow our girls to stay connected to the program and build future board members from our alumni base we have created a Junior Board Membership. This position is open to any girl between the ages of 18-25 who played 4 of their last 5 spring seasons, including their senior year at the park. These girls have a special connection to the park and I believe will add a different and fresh perspective to our decision making having recently graduated from our program. We are very blessed to have five charter Junior Board Members who have a combined 50+ years of playing time at West Cobb. Please express your gratitude to these girls when you see them at the park. I personally find it amazing that with all they could be doing as young (very busy) adults that they care enough to serve their community and their park. As I said earlier, West Cobb is family and these girls help to prove my point.
Finally, I would like to thank you all for registering your daughter in our league. We know there are a lot of options for her recreation, and we are grateful that you have entrusted WCGS. These girls mean the world to us, and we will do the best we can to give them a wonderful experience. Will there be some tough decisions along the way? Of course there will, but we will always attempt to make the decision we think is in the best interest of the girls and the league. It is not always easy but the road is littered with dead squirrels who couldn't make a decision- so we will make the decisions and keep moving forward. I urge you to go to our website and make yourself familiar with all of our rules so you can be informed as best you can. If you have an issue please present your problem first to your daughter's coach in a considerate way. Please remember these coaches are 100% volunteer, are part of our community and doing the best they can to serve our girls. Should your conversation with the coach not resolve your issue, please identify your league director and speak with them next. Should the board need to intervene at that time we will do so. We all want what we deem best for our kids but I can promise you from reading the scholarship essays that what sticks with these girls are the friendships, relationships and memories they make through the years. I would ask that we not lose sight of this when things don't go exactly the way we would like . . . it's not like its college football!!!
I hope you all have a great fall season, I look forward to meeting those of you I don't know and seeing all that I do!
August 20, 2017