Before I get into the meat of this, I want to thank the volunteers that worked with John Yasenko to make this event a success: Jim Burk (CILA board, ref), Austin Ladd (CILA youth coordinator), Kurt Sundermann (Valley board), Alec Sundermann (Valley alum), Ben Oberender (Valley player), Dan Boyd (Valley player). This clinic would not have happened without the efforts of these gentlemen.
Kurt Sundermann's summary of the event:
We had really good turnout throughout the morning session. I think at points we had as many at 25-30 sticks in use. General approach was as boys showed up in small groups, we’d mark them up with one of our members, give them a 2 minute training on basic skills, then let them start throwing a ball in the group. Couple kids hung out for an hour+. Several came back a second time.
Unfortunately, we had to close up shop shortly after lunch as lightning was moving and it seemed unlikely that it was going to letup throughout the afternoon. The entire event ended up closing down at 5:00 due to the weather. (Cancelling an evening concert and fireworks.)
We had two adults who used to play in Denver show up. One gave Austin his card and is really interested in getting his son into the clinics. Another fellow is planning on sending a message on the league site to get signed up for this year’s box league. (He has all of his gear still.) We had a bit of a hard time keeping the fliers dry (and an email sign up for was soaked within 15-30 minutes.) We had one of the Lincoln members show up with some of his friends. Also had a 7th-grader who played out in Denver want to get involved with the clinics and two Dowling high-schoolers who spent a lot of time throwing and shooting. (Dan was really impressed with one’s natural athletic talent. May want to ask him about the guy; I know he was working him pretty hard.)
All-in-all, I think this did a very good job of getting the word about the sport out. I’m sure we had over 100 kids pickup a stick at one point or another. Definitely recommend trying to do this again at future camporees.
John, thanks again for hooking us up with this!
An addition by Jim Burk:
Austin had me suit up and he started shooting at me. Then kid's started showing up. They would come over and try, but found out how hard it was. Then they would start getting instruction's and practice a little. Then they came back a had a better time shooting at me. I told Zach this too. When we run a clinic, I think this is what will draw kid's in. I don't mind doing it. I was in goal pretty much the whole time.
All-in-all it sounds like a success, despite the rain. We may have even found some more adult players and/or coaches in the process. My only regret is that I was unable to help out due to scheduling conflicts. Luckily it looks like there will be many more opportunities in the years to come!