Every year, a group of special young men conclude their time at Taylor and graduate (sometimes without warning...)
Seriously, with the COVID "extra" year, it has been a blessing to have some guys stay for a 5th year... so even now, I have four groups of parents: Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors and what I call "Super Seniors"... guys who stay!
Each year, Coach Mingo hosts a SENIOR BANQUET... the evening after the last home game. Its not a super formal event, but it is very significant. The event includes the whole team, all the coaches and their spouses, but only the parents/family of the seniors in their last year. Having attended it last year as a server, I saw firsthand how great it was to celebrate the team and its senior leaders! If you enjoy Coach Mingo's inspirational speeches post-game then this is all that PLUS - the team uses video to bless their graduating teammates and it is both funny and endearing.
TUFF plays a key role hopefully... we tried to raise some funds to help cover the cost of the banquet (we fell a little short on that, but we did OK...) Last year we started the tradition of having underclassmen parents help serve drinks, help decorate, create some atmosphere... It was nice for the players and parents to not have to get up to refill their glasses since the room was pretty crowded. It was a real hit and best of all: the Senior parents had nothing to do, nothing to which they had to contribute: they just got to enjoy the event.
Last year's Banquet was somewhat easy for me to organize, because I had a junior and I knew a lot of the junior parents... Ideally, a team of undergraduate parents will step up to organize this year's event. The coaching staff is looking for a venue on campus (usually it was held in a special part of the dining hall, but that, of course, is not available this year). The coaching staff also orders the food, drink, etc. So we're just talking about atmosphere, minor decorations, and servers.
So I put it out to you: the parents of the Freshmen, Sophomores & Juniors (note: this email is NOT going to the Seniors or "Super Seniors" parents) Are you willing to step up lead this venture? There isn't a whole lot of precedence - Coach is pretty laid back - but it can be a great night! Last year we used a picture theme and each player went home with a 16x20 poster of themselves... (I imagine those pictures framed and in mancaves all over the land...) and the tables were littered with hard copy photos which the boys could take home with them (actually it was kind of a novelty for them, as most only deal with digital photos!)
I'm looking for about a dozen parents to participate (more the merrier), and a select few to step up and lead. You know who you are: I have confidence that God's calling precedes the writing of this blog post. And if you cannot serve that night or help lead the endeavor, you certainly can help contribute toward the team's cost of having the banquet. Hopefully we can do even better this year. (I think if each undergraduate family gave about $35ish, it would cover the costs nicely...!)
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in helping out!
Here's the Paypal button if you want to contribute, even now, to the Banquet expenses: (Please put "Senior Banquet" in the note section) Of course you can bring a check to any game and give it to Rob Breckel or myself...
Every year I'm pretty blown away by the generosity of everyone. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE feel no obligation to donate... it is only for those who have been blessed and feel called and can give with no remorse: i.e. listen to God! He'll guide you and His plan for you and your giving just may lie elsewhere... and that's completely fine!
Thanks in advance!
Scott & Sonia Griswold
Proud parents of Seth Griswold, Senior, #43