Why does a high school team need a parent organization?

As parents, we want our athletes to have  the best high school experience they can have. We hope that they will develop  pride in their team, a sense of togetherness, and identity that comes from being part of something great. When they graduate (and it happens fast) we want them to be able to look back on these four years with fond memories of their time in THS Aquatics. To that end, we are dedicated to supporting our swimmers, polo players, and divers to make our program the best it can be.
 

What’s the difference between the Tomball Athletic Booster Club (TABC) and Tomball Aquatics Parents (TAP)?

This can be confusing for new parents, but there are two parent-run organizations that support our teams, TABC and TAP.  TABC is a parent organization that supports and helps supplement the budget for all sports. They offer fun spirit events and fundraisers, as well as scholarship opportunities for ALL THS athletes. They sell a variety of spirit merchandise such as apparel and yard signs to raise money to support the athletes.
 
TAP is a parent organization especially for Swim, Dive, and Water Polo. We do not supersede TABC but work in tandem with them to offer an extra level of support for swim-specific needs.
 

So, who makes up TAP and what does it do?

TAP is made up of a board designed to represent all of you.  Anyone is welcome to attend meetings and weigh in on conversations. Your board members are as follows:
  • President - Robyn Johnson
  • Vice President / JV Rep - OPEN (please let me know if you’re a JV parent who’d like to take this position.)
  • Treasurer - Jodi Dibala
  • Secretary - Cathy Brown
  • Member-at-large/Concessions Coordinator -  Tammy Nugent
  • TABC Reps - Heidi & Chuck Hansen
We make sure that all Tomball hosted JV and Varsity swim meets have the volunteers in place to make them run smoothly— Let’s be honest, nothing is worse than a swim meet that goes on forever because it’s inefficiently run. (Raise your hand if you’ve been there.) Together we can organize our meets to run like clockwork—and that is actually a gift to ourselves as well as the kids. =  
 
Besides meets, TAP organizes fun activities throughout the year. Obviously, the 2020 season will look different than the past years. Many of the activities that we’ve grown accustomed to simply cannot happen in light of COVID restrictions. Others may be touch-and-go until we know details. Unfortunately, I can’t provide you with a nice “save-the-dates” calendar as I did last year. However, here are the events we typically sponsored and what I know about them at this time.
 
RED & WHITE PENTATHLON & BBQ
THIS Saturday, September 26
THS Pool
This is a “time-trials” meet for all JV and Varsity swimmers. NO BBQ social this year. Only 1 parent/spectator per swimmer allowed in the stands during home meets. (You are allowed to switch off, however, so each parent has a chance to watch.) Job sign-up open.
 
HOMECOMING PARADE
No information has been released regarding HOCO, but we’re assuming events are canceled for this year.
In past years decorating has taken place 7th period at the pool with a parade on Main Street following. Swim/Dive/Polo will decorate a float and ride in the homecoming parade. This is a time-honored Tomball tradition and such a cool small-town experience. All THS and many THS feeder schools will participate in the parade through the center of town. Following the parade is usually a pep rally at the Tomball Depot.
 
SENIOR NIGHT
Monday, October 12
THS Pool (the location on the schedule is incorrect.)
This weeknight meet is our chance to recognize our THS seniors. Typically, we hold a Senior Walk mid meet in which seniors are announced and escorted by their parent(s). Senior Night will look a little different this year due to distancing, but we will still do our best to make it memorable for our seniors.  This event is coming quickly and we need some Senior Parents to head up the organizing. If you would like to be part of this team please email me at  [email protected].
 
SWIM/DIVE BANQUET
We have no information at this time. 
This is the end-of-season banquet for swim and dive. Typically includes dinner and awards.
 
TEAM NIGHTS
Canceled
We introduced our first Team Night last year to encourage collaboration and camaraderie among teammates. We had hoped to continue Team Nights this year, but these are on hold for now.
 
WATER POLO PARTY
We have no information at this time.
A celebration to mark the end of the water polo season.
 

What does participation as a swim family look like?

Swimming is a family affair, and we need the participation of parents, family members, etc. to make this a great season. That said, 2020 will not run as normal. We have 4 varsity home meets and 3 JV home meets. Most of these will be dual meets, meaning only 2 teams competing. We are not hosting Districts or any invitationals this year. In addition, there will be no concessions and ticketing will be done online. Our primary volunteer needs this year will be
 
  • Computer help - If you are interested in helping to run the computer/board we can really use your help. This Saturday’s Red & White meet is a great time to see what it’s all about and get trained. Please email me at [email protected] so I can reserve you a spot.
  • Officials - We will still need officials this year, and it would be fantastic to have some of our parents. If you have experience or want to get training, there will be a Zoom class coming up. Email Coach Purtell at [email protected] so she can get you set up with that. Also if you have a preference for what type of official you’d like to be, let her know that as well.
  • Door check-in - Although ticketing will be done online, we will be monitoring to make sure spectators have tickets to enter.
  • Hospitality - We provide something for the refs and coaches to eat during meets. This is especially important for evening meets when they don’t have time to get something elsewhere. However, due to COVID anything we offer has to be individually packaged so that we’re not sharing germs. The amount of food will be less since most meets have only 2 teams competing. (We’re talking coaches for two teams and around 8 officials.)

To this end, we expect every family to contribute to the swim season in some way.  (Information on volunteer jobs and sign-ups coming shortly.) It doesn’t have to be a chore, and we can find a spot that feels right for you. As a bonus to our families during this strange time, we are waiving the $20 Hospitality Fee per family that is used to cover the cost of providing food and drinks for officials and coaches during meets. So please help the team out by volunteering a bit of your time.  

What are the benefits of volunteering?

  • FRIENDSHIP. As an individual sport, swimming can be a hard sport to get to know one another. But when parents can get to know one another the swim experience becomes so much more fun. TAP and volunteering are fantastic ways to bridge the gap. The more involved you are, the more it feels like “family.”
  • KIDS WHO FEEL SUPPORTED. The kids can feel when we pour support into their program. Together we put in the effort to help our kids be their best.