Dear Lightning players, parents, alumni, friends, and family,
We need to pass along some news about the future of West Allis Lightning VBC. We would have liked to find a way to do this more personally, but now with social media and peoples schedules, email was our quickest and most inclusive option.
Lightning was established in 1999 and this past season we celebrated our 15th year of being an established club in the Badger Region. In the 2014 club season, Lightning had the most teams in its history – 16 total with 8 on the girls’ side, ages 11 – 18, and 8 on the boys’ side, ages 12 – 18 with TWO boys 12s teams!!! We celebrated as 10 teams between our boys and girls competed in the National Championships.
Through these 15 years we have had the privilege of getting to know thousands of fantastic families and watch those players grow into such wonderful young men and women. We have celebrated 3 National Championships, podium finishes on the boys’ and girls’ side at Nationals, numerous Qualifier wins, Volleyball Festival Championships, and too many tournament wins to count. We watched many players go on to play college volleyball, players go on to play Junior Youth National Teams, and players go on to win Collegiate National Championships. Now we are seeing players train with the Men’s National Team and also play Professional volleyball overseas.
And though the accolades above are amazing, we have always been thrilled to help celebrate all our player’s accomplishments at Lightning; from the G11 player who was able to serve over hand by the end of the season, to the B14 player who worked over and over on his jump serve until he finally got it down. The list goes on and on. These are the victories where no medals were awarded, but were probably the most rewarding for us to be part of. It has been such an honor to be part of these journeys. Our goal has always been to provide the tools for success and watch as our players thrive. We hope that through the years we have accomplished that.
And now, after 15 years, the Lightning Board of Directors has decided to no longer continue with Lightning VBC. We know this may come as a surprise to many people, so we’d like to take a bit to explain our reasons.
As Lightning continues to grow, the administrative burden it puts upon a small group of individuals becomes greater and greater. We essentially are running a small business, and doing it as volunteers. Most members of the Board of Directors have full time jobs and therefore it becomes almost impossible to complete the administrative duties after a full day of work. If the club were to continue, we would need to hire staff to administer the Club, and unfortunately that would mean raising dues to pay for the staffing. All these changes would ultimately become counterintuitive to why we started Lightning 15 years ago – to provide a volleyball club that is strongly based on the fundamentals while providing an affordable option for players and parents.
We know with this news that some people may feel a sense of being left behind, whether you’ve played 1 year or 8 years. Please know that we recognize this, but appreciate that there would be no time where someone wouldn’t have this feeling.
There are thousands of reasons for us to NOT do this – and they all are encompassed in the fabulous people we have gotten to know because of Lightning, and the family and friends we are surrounded by. However, the time commitment that club management demands can no longer be sustained. Respectfully, after 15 years the Board has decided to pursue other aspects of life which these time restraints will not allow.
The Lightning email, phone, and website will continue to be active for the next several weeks but then will be shut down.
We have been honored and privileged to be part of your lives and are so very thankful that you were part of ours. We wish you all true happiness and success in the future and thank you again for all the wonderful years you’ve given us. Thank you for this journey in our lives.