This is the 58th in a series of postings that are updated at least once each month. It is designed to keep you informed about improvements we are making with Island Garden, Lightning and NY Metropolitan AAU.
- On October 28th, we will be celebrating our 20th Anniversary of the opening of Island Garden. We can talk about the success, hard work, great games, the literally hundreds of thousands of players who passed through our doors but what we most want to express is our appreciation to everyone who have supported us for two decades. We are so proud to celebrate the great game of basketball each and every day at Island Garden. We are far from perfect and realize that there are many areas where we need to improve but we can assure all our players, coaches and parents that we are working very hard each day to make the experience better for every person who walks through our doors. Thank you for being part of the Island Garden family!
- We are growing again thanks to everyone’s support. This past month we reached an agreement with the beautiful Long Island Sports Hub to host 30 games each week. This facility is located in Syosset and will accommodate our North Shore teams as well as many Suffolk County teams that participate in Super League. The Sports Hub definitely makes us a better league!
- The JMF Sports Center which is located at 575 Merrick Avenue in Westbury (just outside Eisenhower Park at the intersection of Stewart Avenue) is another great addition to what we offer to the basketball community of the New York Metropolitan area and Long Island. We have taken over the operation of this facility and made a tremendous effort to improve this multi-sport site. Specifically, we have redesigned the inside lobby area, completely rebuilt the bathrooms, added a back entrance, refinished the courts, added a snack bar and, most importantly, added substantially more parking in the rear of the building. We are by no means done as we plan to improve the air conditioning and heating as well. We also have started a new AAU program by the name of Hoop Factory that will be housed at JMF. Our goal is to provide more opportunities for athletes who love the game and just want to play and enjoy. Our new website, www.jmfsportscenter.com is live but we are working on more extensive content during the next two weeks.
- Playsight has been installed at Island Garden which allows all games to be live streamed. In addition to games, clinics and practices can be recorded which in turn can be utilized as player and team development tools. Log on to the Playsight app to watch everything that takes place at Island Garden.
- Super League will have all of its games, played at the Island Garden, available to be seen remotely from all smart phones by the use of Playsight. In addition to this tremendous technological advance, we are also implementing a photo identification program that will take great steps toward insuring that all players who participate in Super League games are on the roster and are of legal age. This is something that is long overdue in all of youth basketball. Teams will be required to enter all of their players’ information and pictures in an easy to use software.
- We are not done yet in announcing yet another tremendous technological improvement. Thanks to our tremendous partner League Apps, we will be introducing a new mobile app that will provide easy access to schedules, scores, game changes and everything else that goes on in our leagues and tournaments. The new app will be released at the beginning of the Super League season, December 1st.(Target Release Date)
- Lightning Fall Tryouts attracted the largest number of players ever. We were able to form new teams as well as fill vacancies in existing ones. We were astounded by the tremendous response.
- We recognize the need to improve our Lightning Girls program at the younger grades. We are beginning a Lightning Girls’ clinic at Island Garden next week to prepare players for the January tryouts as well as school teams. Watch for details on www.islandgarden.com
- Several of the Island Garden and Lightning executive team will be traveling next week to Cleveland to attend the AAU National Convention. Our primary goal will be to hear new ideas on how to improve all of our basketball offerings.
I attended a meeting with a very successful business person this morning and he stated that success only comes by working as hard as you possibly can every day. I am so blessed that my team at Island Garden, Lightning, NY AAU and JMF are tremendously hard working and dedicated people who truly love what they do. That is the reason for whatever success we have enjoyed as well as our continual commitment to improvement.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and being a supporter of Island Garden, Lightning, NY Metro AAU and now our new JMF Sports Center. I could write more but this has been long enough.
Please contact us if you have suggestions as to how we can continue to improve every day. Many of our best ideas have come from coaches and parents.