By: Ernie Wren
A shout out to the high school girls’ soccer players, coaches, and parents. It’s been a challenging spring season, but it has certainly provided an opportunity to partner up with schools and colleges that have stepped up to let us use their facilities. Certainly not the accommodations they would wish for, but I am impressed with the perseverance these girls have shown in playing their hearts out wherever they are playing.

With a current record of 17-5 (with those losses mostly coming from larger schools outside our class), they have shown a determination to win. As they head into the final part of the season with state playoffs coming up May 13th and sitting on a number one seed in Class 2 District 4, let’s all cheer them on for the best!

A couple of things are coming up that are a lot of great fun, but sometimes adults can turn them sideways.
First, the pool is opening up May 26th at Noon, with an open house on Friday, May 25th, 6pm to 8pm. Stop by and see what Optimist volunteers do to make this community pool work and meet some of the local youth that serve as lifeguards.

The Ashland Optimist Club has privately owned and subsidized this local pool for almost 30 years now, so give them a “thanks”. And when visiting the pool, know that the rules are in place for safety, not to inconvenience anyone.
The next thing popping up of course is youth leagues, whether with the Optimists or local YMCA.

In my 25 years of previously coordinating soccer, baseball, and basketball, it was always my experience that 99% of the problems come from adults, not the kids who simply want to play and have fun. These are not tryouts for MLB, these are rec leagues. And while on that topic, EMBRACE participation trophies.

Too many people misunderstand the value of participation trophies and medals. They are not meant to recognize achievement above others, but to reward and acknowledge that a child has participated in a healthy activity. With the childhood obesity rates way too high, it’s great to recognize an activity other than watching TV or video games.

And much like reading certificates from school (which typically are not designed to recognize the “fastest reader,” but again, to recognize a productive use of time. And yelling/arguing with referees, especially youth officials, is exactly the problem with too many adults that brag about getting tossed out of games. It’s challenging enough to hire and train officials, but the retention rates are often low, due to adult parents. These kids are not any more perfect than anyone else in life, and mistakes will be made, so chill out and enjoy the moment, as they pass too quickly.

• Save the date – on Saturday, May 11th, at 9am, there will be a “Sadie Robinett Memorial Butterfly Garden Build” at the Ashland Ridge City Park on Mustang Drive.
• Southern Boone Middle School will be hosting 8th Grade Promotion on Tuesday, May 21st at 6:30pm in the middle school gym. All 8th grade students and their families and friends are invited to attend the event as we celebrate the 8th grade students and all of their accomplishments while at the middle school. (District FB page). As a 7th/8th grade teacher I am really looking forward to this, seeing the smiles on the kids faces as they progress forward in life!

“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
– Michael Jordan