As the grandfather of four children — three girls — who fall in the third- to sixth-grade group, I had my fingers crossed that fall breaks at their Gilbert and Chandler schools would begin during the week of Oct. 3.
Sadly, they do not.
If they had, a priority for their grandmother, Kay, and I would have been to enroll them in the Fall Break Basketball Camp to be hosted by retired Paradise Valley basketball coach Bill Farrell.
Kay and I are both convinced that it’s camps like the one Coach Farrell is about to host where children learn self-confidence, self-discipline and build strong friendships with their peers.
At the camps, they also benefit from working with others to reach goals and learn to put the team before their individual interests.
Athletes do not always get along perfectly, but putting aside differences to play effectively together is one of life’s important lessons.
Two of our four sons, who are now in their 40s, attended Arizona Sports Camp in Prescott each summer beginning when they were in early elementary school grades.
Sure, we wanted them to be good basketball players, but more importantly, we wanted them to reap the benefits of being around such legendary coaches and teachers as Sammy Duane, who was then an ASC director.
To this day at family gatherings, our sons fondly recall those summers at Arizona Sports Camp, saying they are some of their greatest childhood memories.
When each of our grandchildren were born, our first gift to them was a U.S. Savings Bond to be used to attend Arizona Sports Camp when they wished.
Farrell’s camp is just over the horizon and it represents a great sports and learning opportunity for youths entering third- to ninth-grade.
The camp will be held 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Oct. 3-6 in Wilson Dome.
The fee is $35, which includes a camp T-shirt.
Registration deadline is Oct. 3. To sign up, log on to www.paysonparks.com or call (928) 474-5242, ext 7.
Boogie down tomorrow
The Payson High School homecoming dance will be held 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, Oct. 1 in the Rim Country Middle School gym. It is being held there because old PHS gym is being repaired. Ticket prices are $10 for a couple and $6 for singles. Tickets are being sold today, Sept. 30, at the bookstore.
School officials say prices will increase for tickets purchased at the door. All school rules will be enforced, officials say.
Derby date changed
The Mike Barr Memorial home run derby that was originally scheduled for today, Sept. 30, has been rescheduled for tomorrow, Oct. 1, at the conclusion of the opening round of the memorial co-ed tournament.
The derby date had to be changed due to homecoming festivities occurring this evening at Payson High.
Many of those entered in the home run derby are PHS alumni and participating in the celebration.
Thus, there was a conflict with the derby and a change was necessary.
The actual tournament begins tomorrow, Saturday morning, at Rumsey Park, and continues Sunday. It is open to all co-ed softball teams.
Each team receives a three-game guarantee.
Players must be 16 years or older.
This weekend’s tournament has attracted 12 slow-pitch teams, about six from Payson.
For more information, call (928) 978-0703.