Monday, June 25, 2018
Sports

Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center a snapshot of history

Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. Here are excerpts from the speech executive director Chuck Burgess delivered to the audience.

When thinking about the place in Brandon's history that the Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center holds, three words come to mind: community, impact and legacy.

In 1963, the Brandon Swim and Tennis Club, which it was known at the time, set out to be a community destination and a safe place where people could gather to learn to swim and play tennis, socialize and enjoy each other's company. In those days there weren't too many places, if any, that brought people together like "Brandon Swim and Tennis."

It was a place ahead of its time with a 50-meter pool, diving boards and a 10-meter tower. And as more and more people found out about the unique programs created for the children in the area, new programs were added to address the demands of the community.

With the community always in mind, BSAC was one of the first child care programs that transported children to after-school care. It was also one of the first organizations to address youth drowning prevention before most of the country even saw it as a social issue. It was a place where children could walk to or ride their bikes and play all day with their friends until dusk and their moms called them home.

Many of them thought they were already home with the amount of time they spent here. From learning to sew to countless arts and crafts projects to sports-themed summer camps, year after year BSAC began to not just be a part of the community, but it was forming its own community: a community of higher-level athletes, of mighty mites tumbling on mats and dipping their toes in a pool for the first time.

A community of seniors spending time together to take care of their health first and then to socialize for hours after. It was a community of children having a safe place after school whose parents trusted their kids were getting an experience they couldn't get anywhere else. It was a community of care and love for the children and families in Brandon and later other areas as well.

Activities upon activities, days after days, life-impacting memories were planted like seeds waiting to sprout later in life. How do we know that this iconic organization has impacted this proud community? Because of the stories. Because of the people. Not just a few hundred people or even a few thousand people. Tens of thousands of people over five decades. Three generations of impact each now able to share one thing that made a difference in their life — BSAC. …

Listening to these stories told to me throughout the community over the past five years that I've had the privilege to lead this organization is like getting a snapshot of Brandon's history and its people. ...

I don't look at BSAC as just a local nonprofit, but rather a very special place in the heart of Brandon. After all, how many places can you climb the same tree that your grandfather did, or dive off of the exact same diving board that your uncle did or learn to swim in the same pool that your mother did or win a tennis trophy to put on the shelf right next to the one your dad won here years ago? It truly is a place of connection and impact.

This is why the community has invested so much in us and allowed us to serve them for so long, because it trusts us to continue to do the things we do so future generations can share their stories with their own children, grandchildren and great grandchildren at BSAC. You could say that BSAC is in Brandon's DNA.

We want to thank you all for coming today and to all of those that have supported us the past five decades. It is an honor to serve our community through our programs and mission. We appreciate the trust that you have put in us over the years and are committed to continuing the tradition of excellence that people have come to expect from us.

Comments
A local hockey draftee? Mitchell grad Nathan Smith is just that

A local hockey draftee? Mitchell grad Nathan Smith is just that

TAMPA — Every year during draft season, players from the Tampa Bay area are selected in the NFL, MLB and even NBA drafts.But NHL?Sure enough, in the third round of Saturday's NHL draft, the Jets selected Nathan Smith, a forward who was born in ...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Sports on TV/radio for Monday, June 25

TODAYBaseballAngels at Royals4 p.m.MLBNationals at Rays7 p.m.Fox Sun; 620-AMDiamondbacks at Marlins7 p.m.FSFYankees at Phillies7 p.m.MLBCubs at Dodgers10 p.m.ESPNCollege baseball, World SeriesBest-of-3 championship, Game 1: Oregon St. vs. Mississippi...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays season turning into good one

Rays season turning into good one

ST. PETERSBURG — The Tampa Bay Rays are not the best team in baseball. They are not going to win the World Series this year. Heck, they probably won't even make the playoffs.But I tell you what. This team is a heck of a lot of fun to watch.And ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rodney Pageís takeaways from Sundayís Rays-Yankees game

Rodney Pageís takeaways from Sundayís Rays-Yankees game

The catwalks at Tropicana Field are arguably the worst feature, but they  came in handy for the Rays on Sunday. Yankees pinch-hitter Clint Frazier hit what looked to be a ninth-inning home run that would've given them a one-run lead. Instea...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Rays beat Yankees in 12 innings on Jake Bauers homer

Rays beat Yankees in 12 innings on Jake Bauers homer

ST. PETERSBURG — Rays first baseman Jake Bauers sat at his locker after Sunday afternoon's 7-6, 12-inning win over the Yankees and thumbed through his text messages. There was no way he could get through them all. That's what happens when ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Rays journal: Yarbrough comes through, Venters to DL, support for Ramos

Rays journal: Yarbrough comes through, Venters to DL, support for Ramos

ST. PETERSBURG — Ryan Yarbrough was only supposed to throw on Sunday if it was an emergency. In the 12th inning with the score tied 6-6 and a runner on first, there was an emergency.Jonny Venters tweaked his right hamstring trying to cover firs...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Rays sweep Yankees with Bauers walk-off in 12 innings

Rays sweep Yankees with Bauers walk-off in 12 innings

Tampa Bay Rays first baseman Jake Bauers (9) hit a walkoff homerun during the Tampa Bay Rays game against the New York Yankees at Tropicana Field on June 24, 2018, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The Rays won 7-6.Tampa Bay Rays first baseman Jake Bauers (9)...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Rays team up to beat Yankees again 4-0

Rays team up to beat Yankees again 4-0

ST. PETERSBURG — With all that's been said, tweeted, ranted and written on these pages and elsewhere about the Rays' odd, unorthodox, weird and some days downright wacky pitching plan, this might be the craziest thing yet:It's working.Like, rea...
Published: 06/23/18
Greg Auman answers your questions about NFLís investigation into Jameis Winston

Greg Auman answers your questions about NFLís investigation into Jameis Winston

There are many unanswered questions and discrepancies about the story of Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston and the March 2016 Uber ride in Arizona that has led to his upcoming three-game suspension for violating the NFL's conduct policy.The Bucs won't ...
Published: 06/23/18
Will this be Jameis Winstonís last season in a Bucs uniform?

Will this be Jameis Winstonís last season in a Bucs uniform?

A t his introductory news conference after being drafted No. 1 overall by the Bucs in 2015, Jameis Winston said to judge him on his actions moving forward."Actions speak so much louder than words, or what they may have read or what they may have hear...
Published: 06/23/18