Sunday, February 28, 2010

CTK Track news for the week of 1 Mar 2010...

Greetings Track Families,

There's less than a week to the first meet of the season. Here's hoping the weather is cooperative next Saturday afternoon!

Practice Schedule
We'll practice twice this week until 6pm. Starting next week, we'll go until 6:15pm.
  • Tuesday, March 2, 5-6pm-- College Park HS track
  • Thursday, March 4, 5-6pm-- College Park HS track
A few people have asked if I send an email out when canceling practice due to rain. The answer is no, I do not. Instead, I use Twitter to update a box on the front page of the web site. You can either check that box on rainy days after 4pm, or follow "ctktrack" on Twitter.

Mini-Meet News
Your athlete's T-shirts should be available at practice Tuesday and Thursday or at the mini-meet on Saturday. If not, kids may wear last year's T-shirt or anything they like since this is just a practice meet for our team. We try to get the kids to wear black shorts to make more of a uniform, but it's by no means a requirement.

The Mini-Meet starts at 1pm, but all athletes and first shift volunteers should be there by 12:30pm. The setup crew should be there at 12 noon. We will wind up this meet by about 5pm, regardless of where we are in the progression of events.

Kids will be signing up for events this week at practice. If your child won't be attending the Mini-Meet, please make sure he or she knows that so that they can tell their coach. We have the kids sign up for events ahead of the meet since they are limited to two running and one field event or one running and two field events at each meet. (Relay events don't count; kids can always run in all of the relays though of course we always need teams of four.) We find that having the kids sign up ahead of time makes it easier for everyone at the meet and focuses them a little bit. Signing up for events ahead of time is not required nor is it binding since the kids are not really signed up for anything until they register with a clerk of the course for a running event or at a given field event at the meet.

As has become a tradition, we've invited the St. Ignatius CYO track team to our Mini-Meet. (They teach our sprinters humility, a valuable trait!)

Volunteer Alert
Expect a reminder phone call from the volunteer coordinators (or one of their helpers) regarding your work assignment late in the week. Please note that they may have assigned you a job if you signed up late or perhaps we moved you from your original assignment to fill a more urgent need. Thanks in advance for your flexibility.

Please check the Volunteers page on the web site for the Mini Meet volunteer positions. If you are not signed up already but are available to work (especially in the second shift, and especially if you are experienced), please contact our volunteer coordinator, Katy Simpson (, to let her know where you can help. This is a training exercise for our "real" meets so we expect everyone to help out. Thanks!

Officiating Clinic

We will hold our annual Officiating Clinic this week. It is especially for parents new to the team who will be working at meets though everyone is invited. We often have volunteers from other parishes join us too. While most of the meet jobs can be learned on the spot, please try to come to the Officiating Clinic for a preview and overview.
  • Wednesday, March 3, 7pm at Christ the King School, room 222 (6th grade classroom)
Which Events Should My Kids Do at the Meet?
The two most frequently asked questions I hear at this time of year are
  • What is the order of events?
  • Which events should my kids do?
The first one is addressed on the front page of the web site. I also have little cards to hand out that summarize the same information. (I gave them out at the parent meeting, and there are always more cards available at the meets.)

The second question is more subtle but you and your kids will quickly come to your own understanding. Here are our guidelines:
  • We encourage kids to pick different events over the first 3 meets as far as possible. What we don't want is for kids to decide coming into track that they are sprinters and only ever run the 50m and 100m races. Since each athlete is allowed to do 2 individual running events and 1 field event (or else 1 individual running event and 2 field event) at each meet,they can try out quite a lot of distances. Relays do not count in this -- kids can do all three relays each week if they want.
  • On the other hand, it is useful for the coaches to find out who is fast for planning relay teams. We usually build relay teams strictly on a merit basis with the fastest 4 kids on the "A" relay team and the second fastest on the next team and so on. However, some kids improve more than others so these things are not set in stone until later in the season. Anyway, I often encourage everyone to do a 100m race in the first couple of meets just so I get all their times.
  • Every athlete is expected to run in the 4x100m relay near the beginning of each meet. It's important that you alert your primary coach if your athlete is not coming to a meet so that the coach can adjust the relay teams.
  • If a kid just isn't sure what to do, his or her coaches will help. We always have an opinion!
See you on the track,


Carl Godkin
CTK/SC/SS Track & Field Coordinator

Friday, February 26, 2010

CTK Track news for week of 22 Feb 10...

Greetings Track Families,

Welcome to week 4 of the track season.

We'll practice twice this week as usual, going a little bit longer:
  • Tuesday, Feb 23, from 5-6pm at College Park HS
  • Thursday, Feb 25, from 5-6pm at College Park HS
We'll begin doing different event workouts this week which can be a little chaotic until the kids get used to it.

Looking Ahead
We have two weeks until our first meet, which will be our Mini-Meet. It takes place on Saturday afternoon (our only afternoon meet), March 6, at 1pm at College Park HS. Next week's mail will talk more about this meet.

In advance of the Mini-Meet, we'll also have our annual Officiating Clinic, on Wednesday evening, March 3, in the 6th grade classroom at CTK School. (This is the same room where we held sign-ups.)

We will also hand out team T-shirts to those who ordered them at the end of practice on Thursday, March 4th. Our T-shirt coordinator should have the remaining T-shirts available at the Mini-Meet itself, and for a week or so afterwards.

I've posted the volunteer lists for all of the meets on the web site on the Volunteers page. Katy, our volunteer coordinator, is just starting to fix my mistakes and fill in the blanks with people who signed up late. If you spot errors (especially if I managed to misspell your name, for instance), please email Katy at . We will be moving folks around as spots open up and promoting people with some experience into "head" jobs as necessary.

We'll also be providing reminder calls 1 or 2 days before each meet when you are assigned to work.

If you are wondering about the shaded areas on most of the meets, those jobs will be assigned to the other parish teams once the schedule is published. We host most of our meets, but rely on our guests for their help running all of the events.

(First Aid and Ribbon Sorter volunteers -- You don't appear on the schedule yet but your time will come!)

Is your athlete coming to practice in skate shoes or basketball shoes? Please try to make sure that he or she actually wears those running shoes you bought! Your children's feet will thank you.

Also, as I mentioned at the parent meeting, please don't send your athlete to practice if they are sick or injured and can't participate. Yes, it's happened already this season a few times. Thank you!

See you on the track,


Carl Godkin
CTK/SC/SS Track & Field Coordinator

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Insurance Crisis Solved

Greetings Track Families,

I'm very sorry that I had to cancel track practice on Tuesday with almost no notice, but it was unavoidable.

The school district now has their insurance certificate so we'll be able to practice Thursday, Feb. 18, from 5pm until about 5:50pm.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

CTK Track news for week of 15 Feb 09...

Greetings Track Families,

Practice Schedule
We'll practice twice this week again, on Tuesday and Thursday from 5 until 5:50pm at College Park. If it's rainy, you can check the web site after 4pm to find out if practice has been canceled and replaced by ark building. The practice status will appear in the Twitter window in the upper right hand corner of the main page. (I am told that it's possible to get these "tweets" on your phone or other mobile devices; ask your 6th grader if you need help with such things.)

Team Roster
Full alphabetical roster with contact info:

Late Sign-Ups

We have 250 kids signed up at the moment, and we will only accept new sign-ups through the end of next week.

Don't Like Track After All?
If our track program is not working for you or your familiy for whatever reason, I am happy to issue refunds for your fees and either return or shred your volunteer deposit check. Please let me know and provide a mailing address where the refund check is to be sent. By dropping formally, we will know to remove you from the volunteer assignments you may be leaving behind. I am happy to give back at least partial refunds well into the season, so there's no hurry.

Miss Past Track News?
If you are joining us late and want to read past email newsletters, please check the
News link on the team web site.

Volunteer Listings Coming Soon
All of the volunteer jobs that you selected at sign-ups have been entered and will soon appear on the Volunteers page on the web site. If you signed up late, we'll be adding your name to the mix too. Our volunteer coordinator or one of her assistants will be in touch with you when that happens. I'm hoping to make it easy for you to search for your assignments as well this season, but we'll have to see how that works out.

Lost & Found
After Thursday's practice, one of our families found a Plantronics ear piece (apparently for a cell phone) in the College Park parking lot. It is a Steel Blue color and looked to be in good condition. She turned it in to the CPHS office so please inquire there if it's yours.

We will have Lost & Found items galore once we start meets!

See you on the track,


Carl Godkin
CTK/SC/SS Track & Field Coordinator

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

CTK Track news for the week of 8 Feb 10...

Greetings Track Families,

Parent Meeting Handouts Posted
Thanks to all who attended the Parent Meeting last weekend. I have posted the handouts from that meeting on the
(you guessed it) Handouts page of the web site if you missed it.

We'll practice twice this week:
  • Tuesday, Feb 9, from 5pm to 5:45pm at College Park HS track
  • Thursday, Feb 11, from 5pm to 5:45pm at College Park HS track
Remember to check the team web site after 4pm on practice days if it's rainy. Or, if you are trendy, you can follow ctktrack on Twitter for track practice updates.

Running Shoes
...are HIGHLY recommended. We're seeing a number of kids who are wearing skateboard (not good) or basketball shoes (not as bad) to track. They should all be wearing running shoes. Local shoe stores such as Athletic Outpost in Walnut Creek, Fleet Feet in Pleasant Hill, and Roadrunner Sports in Concord will all give you 10% off if you tell them your child is on a track team, but you can buy running shoes anywhere.

Team Roster
The team roster is at [Ask Carl]. I have added new kids since last week and fixed a bunch of errors. Let me know if you find any mistakes. There is a second page called "Stastistics" that looks at the numbers in each group, by parish, and this week only, by T-shirt size.

Late Sign-Ups

We have 239 kids signed up at the moment. This number moves around a lot and we will still accept new sign-ups for another couple of weeks. Tell your friends.

Old News
If you feel that you want more information or a preview of the season ahead, most of the family emails I've sent out over the past two seasons are archived under News on the web site.

See you on the track,


Carl Godkin
CTK/SC/SS Track & Field Coordinator

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

CTK Track News for the week of 1 Feb 2010...

Greetings 2010 CTK/St.C/St.S Track Families,

Welcome to another fun season of CYO track featuring the combined team of Christ the King,
St. Catherine, and St. Stephen parishes! I'll be sending (at least) a weekly email for the
rest of the season with news about practices, meets, and other team information. Don't
say you weren't warned.

We will be practicing at College Park High School this season, on Tuesdays and Thursdays
starting at 5pm. We'll finish up before 6pm until the time changes in March. Please pick
your athletes up promptly after practice so the coaches can get home themselves.

Our first two practices will be:

Tuesday, Feb 2 5-5:45pm at College Par High School track
Thursday, Feb 4 5-5:45pm at College Park High School track

Dress warmly for practices at College Park. Even though your kids probably claim
not to feel the cold, PLEASE send them to practice in sweats.

Athletes should wear running shoes, sweats, and bring a water bottle. I would really
like it if they brought all of these things home after practice too.

Parents should walk their athletes down to the track and either come to the track for pickup
at the end of practice, or meet us shortly after practice ends at the gate to the parking lot.

With all of the rain we've had lately, I hope you won't be surprised if some of our practices
are cancelled due to bad weather. Here's our plan: We practice on an all-weather track,
so it's possible to practice no matter what the weather. However, in the interest of
keeping all of the coaches from quitting, I cancel practice if the weather is particularly
bad. I will post an announcement about practice on the front page of the web site
( by 4pm if practice will be canceled.

This season that announcement will be in the form a "tweet" which should appear
in the Twitter box in the upper right corner of the home page. Or, you can follow ctktrack
on Twitter directly if you are as au courant as all that.

Parent Meeting
Don't forget the Track Parent Meeting on
Thursday, February 4th,
at 7pm in the Christ The King
Parish Hall. We hope that at least one
parent from each family, particularly new families, will come and learn more about
the program, meet the coaches, and get their questions answered. If
you have friends who may be interested in signing their kids up too, invite them
to the meeting. I dislike long meetings (ask any of my co-workers) and intend
to finish up by 8:15pm if possible, though we'll stay around to answer questions
as necessary afterwards.

Web Site
Our team web site has a map (on the Directions page), a schedule of events
(on the Schedule page), and lots of other information. You can even check your
volunteer assignments (eventually) and view meet results (after we have some meets).
The web site address is at the bottom of every mail you get from the team.

I do not want to help you get more spam or junk mail, so I do not put a link to the
roster on the web site. However, it's always there in case you need it to arrange
job swaps or car pools at [Ask Carl]. If I have managed to misspell
your name or confuse your contact info, please let me know. In attempting to decode
some of the handwriting on the forms, I was occasionally forced to make a wild guess!

Mailing List
If your family uses multiple email addresses, I can add others to this mailing list. However,
it seems more likely that you will ask me to drop an email address. In either case, please
let me know.

Late Sign-ups

We will accept late sign-ups until about February 25th. If you have friends who are interested,
please invite them to the parent meeting, or to check out the web site or even to come to
practice. Kids not actually signed up for the team are welcome to practice with the team to
see if they like it as long as a parent sticks around during practice. (That's because I don't
have a medical release and if anything should happen, we'd have a problem.)

See you on the track and the parent meeting,


Carl Godkin
CTK/SC/SS Track & Field Coordinator