From Left Field: Root, root, root for the home team

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By The Staff

Root, root, root for the home team

With the economy the way it is right now, everybody is looking for a bargain. I discovered a great bargain a while ago and sadly, very few people have caught on.

I see people every Saturday and Sunday who spend hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to attend a single sporting event. It could be a college, semi-pro or pro team. But where that money could be better spent is right here in Washington County, on our own athletic programs.

Did you know that entire budget for the athletic director at Washington County High School is under $5,000 – for the year!!!

Boosters have done a wonderful job of raising money for their respective sports and I applaud their efforts. But I think we can all do our part to lift the burden a little from them, and instead of pulling through the drive-through window on the way to the game, use that money to buy a hot dog, bag of popcorn or a cup of hot chocolate from the concession stand.

There’s a big marketing campaign in the commonwealth right now about buying Kentucky-proud products, items made in Kentucky. Well, I believe we should try purchasing Commander-proud products, items that benefit our Washington County athletes.

I have one simple challenge for you. Search your closet, somewhere - tucked between your Brett Favre jersey and your Derek Jeter t-shirt - is there one single piece of clothing with the Washington County logo on it?

Supporting local sports is also a great bargain. Instead of watching bloated, babbling millionaires whine about their contracts or the paparazzi following them to a trendy nightclub, you get to watch kids play for the love of the game. Isn’t that a refreshing idea?

You can probably attend all Commander home football games for the price of parking at one Louisville or UK game. You can even buy a season pass for $35 to get into every WCHS sporting event! For the price of gas to drive back and forth to Cincinnati, you can attend all WC home games – boys and girls!

But the biggest reason to be out there supporting your local prep teams is the fact that these are your kids, or you know these kids. These are sons, daughters, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, neighbors, friends, students and classmates.

Your presence is not lost in the stands or in the bleachers – they know you are there, and they know when you are not there. There is a rush of adrenaline that athletes feed upon from their crowd. It builds their confidence and makes them want to perform better, and that leads to a better team and a feeling of self-esteem. The young men and women want to know that they are appreciated, not taken for granted.

There is a great return on your local athletic investment because you can see week in and week out the result of your contribution. We get to see these kids grow from the backyards to the playgrounds, from the playgrounds to the ballfields and if they are so blessed, from the ballfields to the stadiums.

There’s a certain pride you can show when a WC kid hits the game-winning shot at the buzzer, dives into the end zone, makes that great volleyball save or strikes out the final batter of the game. You can look proudly at the person next to you and say ‘I know that kid!’

I wholeheartedly believe that giving should begin at home; we should take care of our own before we send dollars out of the county. OK, so you got to sit on the 50 at the big game in Louisville last weekend. That doesn’t impress me one bit. What will impress me is seeing you at every Commander or Commanderette game rooting for your true home team.

That’s all I have time for now, I’m off to Rite Aid to get my WC gear!