Summer Musings and Fall Feelings

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  Well it’s time to get back into the swing of things and what better way to do so than a free-thinking look at the past few months . . .  
First, just wanted to thank everyone who has been patient with my absence from the site for the last 6 weeks or so.  Most readers know I lost my Dad back in May and unfortunately I also lost my Mom a few weeks ago in October after a lengthy battle with dementia.  She had been living with me for about 18 months and when my Dad passed she pretty much gave up mentally and it was just a matter of time.  The time constraints on me where pretty hefty hence the lack of output here.   Thankfully they are both now in a better place and back together again and life has finally starting to get back to a semblance of normality.  For those of you who have passed on their best wishes to me I thank you for that.   Also, I was jolted in August by the double murder in Jupiter/Tequesta, which many of you read about.  Michelle Mishcon Stevens was a close colleague of mine when I worked for Northwestern Mutual for five years and it just drained me when I heard about it.  RIP Michelle and John. I’m going to pick up first with Casey Powell’s Speed Lacrosse beach event since it marks the time frame for me . . . my mother’s last journey through a hospital stay and to hospice occurred the same day I returned from Siesta Key from what was a terrific weekend before I got the news of my mother’s hospital admission.
  Casey’s event, partly broadcast on the new LaxSportsNetwork.Com, was a nice combination of introducing his Speed Lacrosse format and as a gathering of his friends and colleagues.  I didn’t stay the whole day Sunday so I was not able to report on champions but in reality that type of result was not really important. The highlight of the event for me was being able to finally meet John Michael Knight and family and be able to talk to them for awhile.  Those who receive the updates from the Caring Bridge site know how much of a journey this is for him and the family and the later reports are becoming more encouraging.  His folks are about as upbeat as you can possibly be in this situation and the talk with them was something I won’t soon forget.  Best wishes to JMK and his family for continued improvement!  it’s so easy for those of us in the lacrosse community to forget a little about the real life stories that are not just on paper, but in person. Another nice part of the weekend was the time I spent with John Galloway, the new head coach of the Jacksonville University Dolphins and I will try to get the transcription of the interview I did with him up as a separate article soon. Siesta Key is a very nice island area near Sarasota and the beach is beautiful . . . in one national poll it was voted America’s nicest beach, a fact they take great pains to advertise! The kids playing really got into it and Casey had to be thrilled with the response.  The game itself is a terrific introduction for those without a lot of experience and as an intro.  Of course Casey, not being able to deal with the word retirement, might well come up the MLL version of this to keep his streak of years playing in place . . . he at least hinted at that to me. Good luck with the new version of this!   a launch mcardle 1   The MLL and the Launch went through some changes too, as for the first time the league witnessed some ‘free agency’ movement and the Launch were hit with the departure of Jeff Reynolds and were not able to sign anyone to the roster. There are a number of items to catch up with on the Launch and I will get to them in a separate article.   Jeff Reynolds Launch 2016   I’ve not made it yet to any ‘fall ball’ club events so I can’t really get to that part yet!  But given how the lacrosse community works down here I can confidently say that there must be at least ONE new program and the deck has been shuffled some . . . can’t wait to get that input too. Embry Riddle finally has it’s Men’s Head Coach for the new program, Palm Beach Atlantic is a year closer to its’ D2 debut and we will also be bringing you news about events to benefit others in the lacrosse community.  And I will also be bringing you Jeff Goldberg’s latest venture into a leadership program for elementary school students in Delray Beach!   2016 Team Florida Showcase Youth Academy (7)   Some good news on the podcast front . . . Brian has mastered the podcast software and we will be back in business this season on that front.  Wells is also looking to be fully involved and whether that will be through his gig at the Sun-Sentinel or through us we’ll see but you can pretty much count on some sort of podcast coming back to the fore!   It was great to be able to provide the local community with the FLN Lacrosse Classic this year but in all likelihood we are not going to be able to do it again this year . . . of course, if I win Powerball you can count on a few such events EVERY year and I’m sure Dave Gross is looking forward to me being the owner of the Launch should the Powerball jackpot be big enough . . . right Dave?   hobart-cornell-2016  (via PBCSC web site)   But I am thinking about something even better for the future. The Palm Beach County Sports Commission loves this sport and I want to help them target the MCLA championships (for those who don’t know that is the college club championships and believe me it is GREAT lacrosse).  And if that works out well I pledge to all our readers that in the back of my mind is the big enchilada . . . the NCAA Championships!  FAU is the perfect size for the event and the perfect area to handle an event like this.  We know for a fact that there have been groups bidding from Tampa and Jacksonville in the past bidding cycles to bring the event to Florida and I will work towards finding a way to bring that great event to our area until we can one day make it a reality! That’s enough for now and I will be looking forward to getting back into the groove and look forward to the coming season! After all, some of the schedules are starting to leak out and Monday, February 6th already has a few games listed! That’s ONLY 93 days away! Get cranked!