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Weekly Team Email - 8/26/2020

As we roll back into the school year – a few thoughts as we begin the new season...
I can only imagine how challenging this year will be for parents and how frustrating both education and extra-curriculars will be as we move through this uncertain space. Our athletes will struggle too - as they miss what is normal - their friends, their teams, their competitions - and we will worry about their safety and health, mentally & physically.  Couple that with concerns about older and immunocompromised family members or business booms or busts or the social/political climate and some days just seem overwhelming.

I know I worry a lot more than I used to.

I am trying to spend spare minutes to breathe and relax, in lieu of diving into social media, spending a few moments in gratitude for what I do have, so that I  feel like I’m my best self for today, whatever that definition might be on that particular day. 

It’s not easy.
For any of us.

But we have a unique opportunity to foster growth as a team, dedicated to creating athletic opportunity for our athletes within the context our training and companionship - in and out of the pool.  Our greatest strength as a program resides in our great aquatics tradition and legacy of team family. 
If we are understanding and empathetic towards our team family as everyone is moving through this uncertainty in our particular ways, we can help each other struggle, grieve, cope and, when we've finished this part of our journey, eventually laugh, socialize & celebrate how far we have come!

And now – some more benign reminders:

1)Please note that all swimmers participating in the fall season have been invoiced for registration fees and the first month of programming.

If you do not plan on participating this fall – please withdraw no later than August 30 to avoid any charges. The registration fee of $150 is non-refundable and the monthly fee has a scaled refund effective only until September 15th.  All billing questions should be directed to Kristen Tanakatsubo, our Business Manager – kristent@swimntsc.org

2)Illinois Swimming Waiver

Illinois Swimming sent a waiver to all Registered SWIM Athletes and Non-Athletes (Coaches/Officials/Board Members). This looks like a suspicious phishing email from Andy Sego. In fact, this is a very real email that all athletes and non-athletes will need to complete to participate in swim meets.  We are hopeful that we can get something on the schedule by October, so it is important for every athlete/parent to sign the waiver. New athletes will get the waiver after Labor Day, when we send in our registration.  

3)New Locations

If you have not been to one of the recently on-boarded locations yet [JCC/OLPH] as we move some of our programming indoors – please check our updated training protocol so that you know where & when to drop off athletes as some of that has changed. LOCATED HERE
We are optimistic that the schedule we have after the holiday weekend will be a relatively stable one. Thank you for your continued patience. 

4)Travel Hot Spot Updates

NC & KS have been removed from the travel restriction list. CLICK HERE for the latest on the Hot Spot Protocol. The 24-hour caveat has been removed however, and ANY travel to hot spots (not passing through) will require a 14-day quarantine.
While the CDC has removed restrictions for international travel (but still recommends 14-day quarantine) – the City of Chicago and Cook County now explicitly identify international travel as requiring a 14-day quarantine. This is also in compliance with the local school district policy.

5)Training Reminders

Two Return to Pool trainings are available for any athlete & parent that did not participate with the program during June/July/August or who has not already participated in a training. These are required for returning to in-person training. Please RSVP online.
August 28 – 6-7p
August 31 – 6-7p

6)Equipment

Please make an effort to order all training equipment for your practice group. Athletes should have fins, kickboard, pull buoy & snorkel (except Novice!). Ask your coach if there are specific types that they should order – there are differences!!
Elsmore also has great options for apparel and practice suits that we picked out for the team if you’re looking something special for your athlete.
CLICK HERE for the NTA apparel store.

7)On-Time pickup/dropoff.

As we move into more facilities, please make an extra effort to have a timely drop-off & pick-up – 5 minutes before and 5 minutes after. We do not have staff to supervise athletes that arrive early or have a late pick-up.
If you know that you will be late in advance, please let your coaching staff know.

8) No Practices September 4-7th.

Our coaching staff has been working incredibly hard to create opportunities from Day One of the pandemic in March. We are going to take September 4th- 7th completely off all programming to allow for the staff to refresh and be ready for the fall/winter season. In the event you need anything urgent, please do not hesitate to contact me via email, but my response time will be a little slower than usual. 

Again - thank you for your continued support of our team, your athletes and the community. 
Stay Safe.
Mask Up.
Social Distance.