The sun is out, the flowers are blooming and children everywhere are getting outside into the spring weather.
It’s a new season for outdoor sports and activities in the Agassiz Harrison communities, and ball gloves and soccer cleats are being dusted off as kids are registered for leagues and other recreation events.
Often behind the teams of children gathered on a field having fun are a group of dedicated volunteers in the background coordinating all of the details that provide such outlets for the community.
“The whole idea is family participation,” said Pam Brewer, one of the organizers of Agassiz Minor Soccer. “It’s a family event. Come out, have some fun, let the kids learn a few skills, make some friends as a community.”
The non-competitive league just finished its first outing last weekend where registration doubled in a single warm spring day.
“We went from 70 registered in six days before the Saturday to around 140,” said co-organizer Shaun Delcourt.
And while that updated number is just short of what Brewer and Delcourt have come to expect in nearly 20 years of running the league, it’s admittedly tough on them to have families register last minute.
Compounding the difficulty of running a volunteer-dependent soccer league, many helpers left before this season.
“With anything to do with kids now it’s hard to find volunteers,” Delcourt said. “This year I lost quite a few coaches that I had last year, it was just a bigger turnover than normal.”
He and Brewer don’t have children in the league from their own families, and they are hopeful to attract more volunteers—with kids are enrolled or not.
“I realize people work,” said Brewer. “So do we, but you have to have support from the parents to help out because it is their kids. Time you spend with your kids is precious because they grow up too quickly.”
Without help to keep the league going the league might not be around much longer, they say.
It’s the volunteers who keep the cost of registration low so more people can join (young referees are the only paid positions in the league).
“We don’t want to lose these activities for the kids, because we do it for the kids,” Brewer said.
• Registration is still open for the Agassiz Minor Soccer league at the CRCC Fitness Centre. The season will run from April 9th-June 4th every Saturday except on the long weekend. Playing times: Ages 5 to 6 at 9 a.m.; 7 to 8 at 10 a.m.; 9 to 11 at 11 a.m.; 12 to 16 at 12 p.m. The cost is $40 per player and the family rate is $80 for two or more children. The facebook page “Agassiz Minor Soccer” is regularly updated.