Wednesday, April, 22, 2015
Bill Banning 'Redskins' Moniker Advances in California
The state of California is poised to quell any further debate over whether “Redskins” is an inappropriate athletic team name once and for all. The California Racial Mascots Act, advanced to a state Assembly panel on Tuesday, would prohibit the use of the name by any public school beginning January 1, 2016.
“There is obviously a lack of respect when we allow teams to brand themselves with racial slurs,” said assemblyman Luis Alejo, the bill’s author. “The R-word was once used to describe Native American scalps sold for bounty, and in today's society it has become widely recognized as a racial slur.”
There are currently four public schools in the state that use the name Redskins for their athletic programs. The affected schools would not be required to cease all use of the name. Items such as yearbooks and newspapers would not longer be able to utilize the name, but to prevent financial hardship, schools would be allowed to keep uniforms and other materials bearing the name, provided they have selected a new name. Under the legislation, schools would be able to purchase up to 20 percent of uniforms with the old name until 2019.
“Tulare Union Redskins are part of a long and proud tradition dating back to 1890,” Sarah Koligian, superintendent of Tulare Join Union High School District, one of the four holdout schools, told SFGate. “Our school has worked closely with our local Indian tribes to include them in the discussion regarding how the Tulare Union Redskin depicts both pride and respect.”
The bill, approved last month by the Assembly Education Committee, was approved by the Assembly Committee on Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media but must go through another committee before advancing to the Assembly floor.
“It’s a small thing we can do in California that is part of a national movement to phase out the use of racial slurs as mascots,” Alejo said.
Tuesday, April, 21, 2015
Displaced Texas A&M Bats Seeking New Home
The recreation center natatorium at Texas A&M University has been closed since April 6 while crews work to remove hundreds of migratory bats that have taken up residence after being displaced by renovations at Kyle Field.
Thursday, April, 16, 2015
Dodgers Looking to Give Tech Startups a Boost
The Los Angeles Dodgers have launched a program to integrate innovative technologies into the stadium and fan experience. The Dodgers Accelerator program, announced earlier this week, will provide 10 startup companies an opportunity to grow and build awareness for their products.
Tuesday, April, 14, 2015
Landing Zones Around Climbing Walls Get Their Due
Climbing walls have become nearly as common as recreation centers on college campuses across the country, and the prevalence of public facilities dedicated to the sport has led to a generation of climbers for whom the walls and facilities built a decade ago just aren't cutting it any more. As facility operators look to revamp their existing walls to appeal to a more discerning consumer base — or to merely add the amenity — they're thinking more about the various aspects of a functional climbing destination.
Monday, April, 13, 2015
Protecting Gym Lighting, Sprinklers and Scoreboards
In January, dozens of visitors complained of feeling sick after attending a basketball game at Roby High School gymnasium in Texas. Administrators went so far as to have the bleachers removed and tested for chemical residue before uncovering the culprit a couple of weeks later: a broken light bulb over the visitors' bleachers emitting UV radiation.
Wednesday, April, 08, 2015
New Projects: Cleveland YMCA | Emerald Glen Rec Complex | GVSU Rec Center
After years of planning, construction of Parker Hannifin Downtown YMCA (pictured) in Cleveland has begun. The new facility will occupy two floors of former retail space and offer 40,000 square feet of fitness space, including a three-lane lap pool, a sauna, a steam room, networked fitness equipment, a group cycling studio, three group exercise studios, and a social gathering space. Scheduled to open in January 2016, the $8.9 million project was designed by Moody-Nolan Inc. of Cleveland.
Wednesday, April, 01, 2015
e-Sports Athletes Looking for Recognition
At first glance, one might scoff at any comparison between the athletic feats of an athlete on the field and a gamer online, but for e-Sports competitors, there may be more similarities than differences.
Monday, March, 16, 2015
Environmentally Friendly Athletic Field Maintenance
College campuses nationwide are getting greener, focusing on environmental sustainability, from designing LEED-certified buildings to launching zero-waste recycling campaigns and taking "Carbon-Neutral" pledges. College athletic programs are doing their part, increasing energy efficiency through the use of LED lighting and alternative energy sources, reducing water consumption and implementing gameday recycling programs.
Wednesday, March, 11, 2015
Community Supports Footing Tax Bill for Church Ballpark
While nonprofit and religious organizations have been under the microscope in recent years when it comes to tax-exempt status of their fitness and recreation facilities, voters in Boscawen, N.H. last night approved a plan that would donated $6,000 to a local church to cover property taxes and maintenance on its baseball field.
The field, owned by Boscawen Congregational Church, was built in 1915 and has been offered free for use by local groups over the last century, including Merrimack Valley Youth Baseball and Softball. But in 2014, the city’s tax assessor determined that because the lot was not being used for religious purposes, it was not tax exempt, and the church was billed $1,600.
In addition to covering the property tax bill, the city’s donation will also help defray maintenance and upkeep costs for the church ballpark. Church and community volunteers had been assisting with the efforts and will continue to do so.
“It does need some work,” Merrimack Valley Little League president Eric Crane told the Concord Monitor. “Our plan has always been to revitalize and rebuild the church park.”
Not all voters agreed that the donation was a grand slam, however. “My concern isn’t about the kids playing baseball. If you give money to one nonprofit, how do you deny others that come forward?” one resident asked.
Wednesday, March, 11, 2015
Evaluating Campus Recreation Management Software
A good software management system is essential to the success of any business, facilitating everything from access control and asset management to membership sales and scheduling. Choosing a management software vendor is not a task many take lightly; between implementation, training and ensuring compatibility, making the switch to a new system is an arduous undertaking, and the final decision will be one the facility operator will likely have to live with for a number of years.
Monday, June, 16, 2014
AB's Architectural Showcase a Yearlong Affair
The Architectural Showcase in June is the one issue of Athletic Business I look forward to most each year. It's also the issue I spend most of each year working on.
Friday, April, 04, 2014
Blog: Wine at the Gym? I’ll Drink to That
Cardio equipment? Check. Towel service? Check. Group exercise schedule? Check. Liquor license? Pending.
Thursday, February, 27, 2014
Blog: Let Them Eat Cake, If They So Choose
On Tuesday, the White House announced a series of new initiatives as part of the fourth anniversary of the “Let’s Move!” program. Many of them are a great step forward in the battle against childhood obesity and inactivity, including an expansion of the school breakfast program and a five-year partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association and Boys & Girls Clubs of America will provide 5 million children with healthy snacks and physical activity opportunities after school.
Monday, January, 13, 2014
Blog: Women-Only Fitness Zones Perpetuate Stereotypes
Here at AB, it’s the editors’ job to stay on top of what’s happening in the industries we serve. As such, last Friday I came across an article about a gym in Vancouver getting some flak for its decision to close its women-only section.
Thursday, October, 10, 2013
Blog: If You Can't Beat 'Em… Beat 'Em Up!
I was sitting in a hotel lobby surrounded by other people when I opened up my morning news alerts and saw an article announcing the Kentucky High School Athletic Associations' decision to suspend post-game handshakes, so I had to keep my disgust to a minimum - a casual eye roll and understated sigh. Seriously? These athletes are displaying poor sportsmanship, and the solution to that is to do away with the concept? That's like dropping math from the curriculum because the students aren't getting it.
Friday, September, 20, 2013
Blog: Defending "The Slowest Generation"
Friday afternoon, when I should have been hard at work on AB's November issue, I instead found myself fuming over an article from Thursday's Wall Street Journal sent to me by our company owner. The article deemed younger athletes "The Slowest Generation," and accused my generation of being too apathetic about performance and competition.