One month until cross country–Welcome Coach Sawyer who will coach our Group 1 kids this fall

Coach Sawyer will be coaching Group 1 this fall.

Coach Sawyer will be coaching Group 1 this fall.

Sun City is excited to announce that Tracy Sawyer is going to be our Group 1 coach this fall. Our group 1 kids are the kids who have zero or little running experience and are just getting their first taste of cross-country or still getting acclimated to the sport. Her last name may be familiar because her husband Andy was our hurdles coach this spring during track season and did an amazing job.

Our first group in cross-country is for kids just out to have fun, learn a little bit about running, and play a few games at the end of practice. No one ever has to run a race but we would encourage these “harriers” to race as well, especially with the reward of a popsicle and ribbon at the end of a meet.

Group 1, since it is our beginners group only practices during our regular season from September 15th to October 17th.  Any child who would like to continue training after the 17th we will move to Group 2 for the 2nd half of the season if he/she would like to continue on running.

Coach Sawyer, like the rest of the coaches, has kids on the team and her entire family runs.

Currently we have coaches for each of our groups but we could use some extra help in both group one and two to help Coach Tracy and Coach Aleah out. Whether or not you have any running experience we would love to have you help. Message me on Facebook if this is something you are interested in.

Remember, there is a discount for signing up for Sun City by September 8th.

Coach Erik

Do I register my child for the regular or full season?

Today, we had a great question on our Facebook page.  It was, “I have a question about registration fees. The full season fees include all the extra meets. What if we only want to go to the meets during the regular season (ending with Apple Ridge) but would like to continue at the practices after that just for exercise and fun?

Post-season is only going to be geared toward those who are going to be racing in the Junior Olympics which is why we split the season up in two. Previously even if your child did not want to compete anymore we let him/her continue practicing after the regular season was over even if they were not going to race. Unfortunately, we have a limited amount of cross-country coaches. Come the post-season, we will be focusing on race strategy, more intense training, and the dynamics of cross-country.  Aleah and I also experienced a fair amount of burnout the last two seasons. So in order to stay refreshed as coaches, as well as having a competitive post-season team, the post-season team will be reserved for athletes who want to run in the Junior Olympics.  We will also be inviting other teams and middle schoolers to join us for the post-season so we can compete against the larger regions in Spokane and Seattle.

If your child is not going to compete in JO’s, I would just register for the regular season and both races and practices will be over at the Apple Ridge Race. T-Shirts are included in this fee (this was a typo on my part). If your child changes his/her mind and later in the season and wants to do the Junior Olympics, you can then register for the post-season at anytime during the season (the price is just a little bit higher than if you do it at the beginning of the season). Also, of the three groups that practice during the season, group 1 (the just out to have fun group) will stop practicing post Apple Ridge so if someone was in the group and want to continue racing he/she would have to both register for both the post-season and move up to Group 2.

This week and the next few weeks I want to introduce to you some of our coaches who will be coaching this year’s Sun City Harriers.  Aleah is going to be mad at me for posting this but I’m proud of her. Her junior year in high school she won two state titles in both track and cross-country.  She later went on to get a scholarship at the University of Porland before transferring to the University of Washington (where we met on the cross-country team). She also competed for the Junior Olympic Club called the West Valley Ramblers while in grade school which Coach Waddle ran for too (now no longer around).  Aleah will be coaching our 2nd group of harriers this fall.  Our second group is for people who are thinking about being serious but still love the game and popsicle at the end of practices.

Also, we currently need two coaches to coach our Group 1 (Just out to have fun, learn a little bit about running, and play a few games at the end of practice. Kids who wouldn’t mind running in a meet but only if there is a special prize like a ribbon or ice cream afterwards).  Aleah needs an assistant to help her out in Group 2. Last, if you are not willing to coach but want to be active, cross-country is a family sport. We always want parents, grandparents, guardians to come jog, run, and walk with the kids.  Stay tuned for next week and we might have a picture or two of Coach Waddle or Mickelson from “way back” when they used to run against each other several decades ago.   Coach Erik and Chris will be team coaching Group 3 this season.

If you are interested in helping out coaching, please contact me directly on Facebook (Erik) or call me at 941-5191.

Go Harriers!

Coach Erik

Flashback to 1995 and Aleah after she won the state 3200 meter run for Eisenhower.

Flashback to 1995: Aleah Thome (now Mickelson) after she won the state 3200 meter run for Eisenhower.