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Kuemmel's Corner: Spring break is upon us

A week off of school! For a high school student, there might not be anything better. I know many families that spend their spring breaks in warm weather destinations like Florida, Arizona, or even Mexico.

But many of our student-athletes (and coaches) give up their breaks in order to participate in sports. This happens in every season.

Fall athletes give up two weeks of their summer to start practices (sometimes twice a day!) before school starts. Winter athletes give up part of their Thanksgiving or winter breaks to participate in tournaments. And spring athletes give up their spring break to participate in tryouts, scrimmages, and practices for their sport.

With this year's earlier spring break, only two sports had their official first day of practice this week during spring break: softball and track and field. Baseball has a week of optional "arm care" until their official start next week.

Other sports may have some open gyms to allow kids to come in and get ready for their season. The timing of this year's break is much better than it was a few years ago, when we had break in April during our first couple weeks of spring contests.

Some teams like softball used to schedule a trip down south just to get some extra work in. Many years ago, we were very fortunate with the weather that we had over spring break — sunny and 70's most of the week! I think we might have had better weather in Minnesota than some of the other destinations around the world that year.

For the last few years we have had to deal with the winter weather like this year. Right now it seems the snow and cold weather will never go away. Who knows when the snow will melt and we can get on to our track and fields?

Of course, when we do have the bad spring weather, we are very fortunate to have the activity center. I do not know what we would do without it. While we make great use of the fieldhouse in the fall and winter, I am especially appreciative of it in the spring.

For the entire month, our spring teams have the option of practicing in the activity center if their field is wet or the conditions are not great outdoors. I have often heard the question, "What did we ever do before we had the fieldhouse?"

While I am not positive of the answer, I do know teams had to make use of every space we had and be very creative while doing it (like batting cages in the wrestling room or running in the hallways of the school). We are lucky to have such a nice facility.

Thank you to the coaches, students, and their families for juggling your spring break schedules in order to accommodate our teams. Your dedication to Park athletics is appreciated. I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable spring break.

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