|Sent on:||Thursday, March 29, 2012 1:17 PM|
Despite the forecast for 5cm of snow on Friday overnight, the outdoor beach season is quickly approaching.
This message will be a bit long but it carries a lot of important information for the upcoming season so it's best if everyone reads thorugh it.
This will be the 5th season for this Meetup group and during those 5 seasons we have faced many challenges. Over the years the other Meetup groups doing outdoor beach voleyball have risen .... and fallen. Most of those groups either no longer exist or only organize mixed level volleyball on a sporadic basis. We remain the biggest Meetup group and the only group that organizes multiple levels of play. One member told me a story of another beach volleyball group he played with south of the border who also tried to organize multiple levels but how events and levels fell apart and the group lost many of their stronger players because weaker players consistently signed up for the highest levels even though they did not have the skills to play at that level.
Yes, there are many groups outside of meetup that also organize outdoor play and some of them are terrific groups that are less structured and less strict in their rules and levels of play than this one. We will all play where it suits us best. Some prefer the less structured environment and the option of playing any level they want. Others appreciate knowing that they will get a consistent level of play and that there will never be "too many players" or not enough players showing up especially at the higher levels of play. I have set up a social event on Friday May 4 to ask for your feedback on what you would like to see with our group and what we can improve. Feel free to provide your feedback at this event or via email or if you are talking to me in person.
Since this group was created, we have paid over $600 in Meetup fees and spent approx $3,500 on 9 sets of nets (nets, line, balls) including 4 full portable systems. During this time we have gone through approx 20 volleyballs and 3 canopies (1 of which was destroyed by a member). We will once again have to get some new volleyballs and spend on maintenance on new bags, cables, spikes and pins..... not to mention the cost of cleaning out the approx 10 lbs of sand that inevitably ends up in my car throughout the summer !
We have been able to recoup most of the cost of the intial investment so the fees will now be reduced for this year to $2 per event. Current fees will reflect maintenance and new balls for the season as well as the time and effort put in by the organizers. The objective here is not to make money but to assemble a great group of people to play volleyball and socialize with. Payment will be accepted in the form of Loonies or higher denominations. Small change will not be accepted. Please try to bring exact change. There will be no flat fee option this year. It will be a pay per event basis only. We will also be doing some events for charitable causes. A few times this summer we will do a Food Bank Event. Fees will be waived if you bring a nonperishable food item to donate. Volunteers for this event would be apprecaited since there will be extra work to run this event and manage the food donations. If you do not bring a food item then the fee will be $5 to be donated to the Food Bank.
This year volunteers that arrive to carry equipment or save courts will have their fees waived for that day. A few members who consistently came early to assist and help out last year will play for free this year (Jason M, Roger V, Sarah R and others)
The majority of events are held on weekends. Weekday events require additional investment since we need full systems to make sure nets are available to us since very few if any of the permanent posts are available for public use on weekdays. OVA is holding more and more weekend events which squeeze out the public so if we want to play on these weekends we need to buy more full systems (systems are approx $500 each). We also need to replace some of the volleyballs that are getting worn out from all the play over the last few years.
Please remember we operate by the 2 strike rule. @ strikes and you are suspended from the group for the rest of the season. A strike is assigned if you sign up for an event and do not show up or if you sign up and bail from an event with less than 72 hours notice. Many of our events will have long waiting lists and its not fair to hold a spot until the very last minute before bailing out. To avoid mass sign ups months in advance, I will be posting events usually 4 weeks before the event.
When I can, I will also try to hold some coaching clinics for Recreational and Intermediate levels.
I will likely look at doing a season end tournament again for each level. Any surplus fees collected will either be put back into the tournament (in the form of a BBQ or prizes) or be put into other events for members during the year.
If you have any questions, let me know. Hope to see everyone out on the sand.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions.