Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Power of Positive Feedback

by Jack McCombs, 2014 Virginia Senior Games Athlete, 5K and 20K Cycling

Below is correspondence received at the Virginia Recreation and Park Society Central Office on Tuesday, May 20, 2014.  The author, Mr. Jack McCombs from Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, has given consent for its publication and hopes that "Mr. Myers will receive the attention he deserves."  Well done, Kevin!

"A Prince at Virginia Senior Games"

During the 20k cycle race I had the misfortune of crashing due to my own fault.  I managed to remount my bike and ride to the finish, but was feeling considerable pain particularly in my left shoulder.  Kevin Myers, who I believe is an employee of the City of Newport News, immediately came over and helped me dismount from my bike; led me to a chair, and after asking a series of questions, applied an ice pack to my shoulder; and several times during the next hour or so made sure I was comfortable and reapplied the ice pack.  Later I discovered my cell phone, a new iPhone, was missing and must have come out of my jersey during the crash. Mr. Myers using a golf cart drove me back to the scene of my crash and we started to search for the phone but were having no success finding it until Mr. Myers dialed my cell number and was able to locate the phone by the ring, which was completely hidden in high grass.

Later that day I went to a hospital emergency room and was x-rayed and found to have suffered a separated shoulder.

On Monday Mr. Myers phoned me find out how I was feeling and wished me a speedy recovery.

I am very grateful for the help that Mr. Myers provided me and consider him a Prince for being so attentive and helpful.  I'm retired from the US Air Force.  Whenever military personnel are awarded for exceptional performance the citation always includes words such as "his/her performance reflects great credit upon themselves and upon (for example) the US Air Force".  Mr. Myers' performance (assuming he works for the city) reflects greatly on the city and citizens of Newport News.

I have included a photo of Mr. Myers helping me.  Please ensure his management is aware of this token of my appreciation.

Jack McCombs
Kill Devil Hills, The Outer Banks, NC

Monday, May 19, 2014

What I Learned in Newport News

by Nancy Turnage, VRPS Central Office

Last week I spent over 37 hours at a table in the corner of the registration room at the 2014 Virginia Senior Games.  Outside, and all around Newport News, people were enjoying glorious sunny weather (except for a half-day washout on Friday).  They were experiencing the adrenalin rush of great competition, and by great I mean inspiring - people who have learned to enjoy the journey of training, culminating in a physical test of their hard work.

So, while I saw little of the actual athletic prowess (I was able to peek at table tennis and swimming) and the biggest workout of my week were my fingertips on my keyboard - managing registration, communication, results, and other facets of VSG administration - my table duty was one of the most rewarding experiences I can recall.

Why you might ask?  There are two reasons, the first of which is the athletes.  They come through door, and I can see in their frames and in their faces the effort that they have invested in order to arrive.  A 95-year-old archer was accompanied by his daughter and her husband, who are seniors themselves.  The athlete was prepared to compete in the Friday washout - and he did - with a trooper attitude that resulted in a gold medal.  Another athlete (track and field - discus) was back after a bout of prostrate cancer - proud and grateful to just be a part of the Games again.  A 101-year-old swimmer accompanied her swimmer son; a VSG swimmer alumni herself, she broke world records as recently as 2013.

The second reason for my wonderful week was the very special company in the registration room.  Rather than being a cumbersome necessity, this spirited group has turned registration into a wonderful, favorably anticipated part of the Virginia Senior Games experience.  Amidst the grins, playful banter, cheers, singing, games of hangman, impromptu karaoke, and spontaneous dancing - I felt like I was in a sorority of sorts.  These folks reminded me of what matters - the little things like a smile and camaraderie.  I can't recall an athlete who was not greeted with a round of applause, followed by endless shouts of encouragement as they departed.  Many often returned to show-off their wares - gold, silver, and bronze medals - resulting in more clapping and cheering.  My favorite quote of the week:

"Nothing but winners come out of here."

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Excitement in Newport News this Week!

by Nancy Turnage, VRPS Central Office

Virginia Senior Games is presented by the Virginia Recreation and Park Society (VRPS).  A private, non-profit professional organization, VRPS was founded in 1953 with the purpose of uniting all professionals, students, and interested lay persons engaged in the field of recreation, parks, and other leisure services in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

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for information on:
  • Athlete's Party and Bon Secours Wellness Fair
  • Volunteering
  • Sponsorship
  • Schedule Chart and Check-in
  • Sport-Specific Details, Rules, and Chair Contact
  • Tourism and Hotels
The May 14-17, 2014 Virginia Senior Games are qualifying events for
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Friday 7/3 - Thurs 7/16
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Interested in past results?  Click HERE.
This year, 2014, is a qualifying competition year for the
Thanks in advance to our terrific 2014 Virginia Senior Games volunteers!

Be sure to thank them in person!
Billiards Location Change
Breakaway Billiards is the new location for Virginia Senior Games competition on Thursday, May 15 at 9:30am
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There are MANY of you and FEW of us!
Thanks for your patience as we processed your registrations!

> We did our best to pair athletes in partner events who had none or "lost" their partners; thanks to those athletes who "stepped up" to partner and thereby allow other athletes to participate in the fun!

> Bring your registration books with you to the games to have handy access to schedules, contact information, and the Newport News Virginia Senior Games venue map.

 Don't Miss the PARTY
Thursday, May 15 5-8pm
"All-Around Virginia" experience on the Fountain Plaza:  celebrate everything you love and remember about Virginia!
* Games & Prizes
* Music & Dancing
* Exhibits
* Meet Athletes from Across Virginia
* Bon Secours Virginia Health Information & Screenings
* Free Admission for Athletes & their Guests
Thanks to our 2014 GOLD MEDAL Sponsors!
Virginia Senior Games 
6372 Mechanicsville Turnpike, Suite 109 
Mechanicsville, Virginia 23111 
(804) 730-9447

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Great Things are Happening in ARG

by Nancy Turnage, VRPS Central Office

ARG.  Aquatics Resource Group.

In my two years at VRPS, my impression is that ARG is an energetic, active, and PROactive entity.  They are always two steps ahead of me - whether managing their web page, looking to implement their own web-based calendar, formulating workshop ideas, and always, always, reaching out and looking to grow.  Their volume of correspondence is a welcome addition to my inbox.  So, to sum, great things are happening in ARG.

·         The Aquatics Resource Group (ARG) is listening to its constituency… In an effort to benchmark and learn from each other, we are beginning to ask aquatic peers specific questions with regards to their operation, programs and staffing.  We are starting with Aquatic Fitness / Water Exercise staff.  If you would like to participate, please complete and submit our questionnaire and be a part of our results pool (no pun intended).  If there is an area you would like to have benchmarked contact the ARG!