- Hot coffee,
- Someone to take my registration,
- Clean, well supplied lunchroom,
- Clean, well supplied restrooms,
- Clean courts,
- Seat pads,
- Pencils, sharpened,
- Waxed and seasoned discs,
- Discs on the court at the start of the day,
- Someone to sweep the court if I request it,
- Someone to bead the court if I request it,
- Someone to wax discs before each match and whenever else I request it,
- Someone to resupply restrooms and lunchrooms as needed,
- Bottled water,
- Maybe some ice cream or candy bar,
- Someone to pick up the trash I have left behind,
- Someone to collect and dispose all of the trash at the end of the day,
- Someone to prepare the discs, lunchroom and restrooms for the next day’s use,
- Someone to turn out the lights and lock the doors when I have finished playing, whatever time that may be.
Because we ask so much of our volunteers, their numbers have been dwindling for some time now. For that reason no one provides referees anymore, except for the F.S.A. Masters, and many clubs no longer wax the discs before every match as required by F.S.A. rules. The numbers are now so low that the volunteers who arrive at the courts at 7:00 a.m. to prepare for the tournament are, most likely, the same ones waiting until 7:00 p.m. or later to perform the closing chores. They are also the same ones who are there for the third day of play if necessary.
Over the past several years, I have seen many enthusiastic volunteers burn out because of all we ask of them and especially because of the hours we expect from them. The time is fast approaching when we will have to consider what our tournaments would be like if we no longer have any volunteers to perform all of the vital tasks associated with a major tournament.
What I am trying to say is that we need to show consideration for our volunteers. Thank them for their service whenever possible. When it is getting late into the evening and you are still playing, remember that the volunteers are no longer there for you. They are there because of you. If there is anything that you could do during the day to expedite your play and ease their burden, I would ask that you please do so.
Glenn Monroe is the Florida State Tournament Director. 2014 03 29.