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Announcement for 2020 Sharks Season



Sharks,

It is with great sadness that the Wheatlands Sharks Board and the MHSL Board announce the cancellation of the 2020 season. This decision was no less difficult than the decision to proceed forward into registration and to attempt to find normalcy for our children in this unpredictable situation. While we had hoped things would return to normal sooner, it is the Board?s position that even though our state is beginning to open, we are unable to have a meaningful Sharks season with all that defines our organization while at the same time keeping our swimmers and families safe.

At the most basic level, to be a Shark is to be a swim team member. But being a Shark is so much more than participating in training and practice. Being a Shark is about building community through fun social bonding events like movie night and pancake breakfast, building our future leaders by bringing older team members into the coaching structure, building great people with Coach Karen?s life lessons and building great swimmers by teaching and developing swimmers at all levels.

As the Covid 19 crisis continues to unfold, it has become very clear that the regulations set forth to protect us all will also prevent us from having a season that in any way resembled what the Sharks organization does best. How would our little Sharks stay afloat without hands on coaching? How would our coaches coach with masks on? How would our swimmers be able to social distance on the pool deck? How would we practice social distancing in the lap lanes during practice? How would we tell our swimmers we are cancelling every meet, or that we will just swim in meets against each other? How would we ever be able to tell our parents or grandparents that they cannot come to the meet because we are restricted to a yet unknown on-deck capacity? How would we tell our children that we must cancel every social event because we cannot adhere to safety standards for sanitization or social distancing? How would we tell our team that we must cancel our season mid-season because of additional orders from local, state, or federal authorities?

As this situation has developed, it is apparent to the board that not only can the Sharks not have the season we desired, but that any timeline which would allow us a season is too fluid and out of our control. Looking at guidelines from Safer at Home and from our contact with Tri County Health, it is uncertain if we would move to a phase that allowed pools to open or swim teams to swim before July. Finally, even if our area gets to the point that we are allowed to swim (with loads of restrictions), we felt that we would be placing our Sharks into a situation of mass disappointment given all the sacrifices it would take to have a season, not to mention an unreasonable risk to their health and safety.

On a positive note, 100% of the registration fees are being refunded. The board worked diligently with our vendors to secure agreements that allow us to not purchase t-shirts, swimsuits and caps prior to the start of the season. We will be processing refunds in the next 7-10 days and you will see the money back to your account in the next 14-20 days or so. We appreciate your patience with us, as this process will take some time. We thank all of our families who believed in the Sharks and registered knowing that these fees might not be returned. This truly is an amazing group of people!

To all our Shark families, thank you! Our Sharks big and little, our families, our community are too important! This program cannot be what it is without each and everyone of you. We will sorely miss the sounds of our team cheer early on Saturday mornings, the smell of chlorine and sunscreen permeating everything, eating pancakes during the coldest morning of the season at our picture day, watching all the awesome dances put on by each age group at the Sharks dance, glow stick fest at Practice Under the Stars, and all of the smiling faces. While we will all mourn the loss of this season, this decision will allow all Sharks to dream about the 2021 season and all the fun it will bring. We are optimistic that we can return for an amazing 2021 season!


Wheatlands Sharks Board