The youth sports banquet is often times the last chance a team has to get together at the end of the season. When done properly end of season banquets reinforce the overall goals of youth sports organizations.
Things like hard work, team work, effort, practice, and leadership are all reinforced here. Most importantly though kids learn that the team they practiced and built bonds with throughout the course of the season really helped them to learn to have fun, win or lose, and to also try to get better each and every day. Learning that nothing comes easy is a tough lesson that can be made easier through participation in youth sports, and the year end banquet can help reinforce the good times and the benefits of the struggle and growth throughout the year.
A great way to help ensure your banquet is successful is to have a coach or team mom come up and say some words about something special that happened to the team throughout the season. A highlight real playing during dinner and seating can be a fun ice breaker and something nice for the parents to look at.
One important thing to do is to solicit volunteers for the tasks of gathering pictures and also for developing the power point presentation. You don't want to be stuck doing everything in the banquet and having parents volunteer, while tough, can be a great way of building support throughout the organization.
If you are giving away participation awards, keep a couple things in mind. You don't want to go over board. Do not break the organizations budget on over-the-top awards. You don't want to give them .45 cent plastic trophies from oriental trading, but at the same time you don't want to recreate the Heisman either. Bigger trophies were not intended to be given as participation awards. Something small, like a medal or a figure on a base is appropriate. Depending upon the size and funding of your organization you are going to want to stay somewhere in the 2.00 - 6.00 range.
If you need help selecting trophies. There are sites out there that allow you to build your own. And a lot of trophy shops have access to a wide range of awards choices. Some companies even allow you to use your organizations custom logo on your awards. Using a digital sublimation process, you can put your logo on a custom disc that then goes into a figure made specially for these inserts. Putting sponsor logos on awards is a great way to entice sponsors to help support your league.
In the coming days we will be showcasing some great cost effective resins and various awards that can be used as Basketball Participation Awards and wrestling participation trophies.