What does the P.L.A.Y. acronym stand for? - Prior Lake Athletics for Youth – one of the largest Volunteer based Youth Sport organizations in the state. P.L.A.Y. is an independent, non-profit organization, governed by an Executive Board of Directors and Individual Sport Committees.
Who can participate in P.L.A.Y. programs? – The P.L.A.Y. By Laws state that a participant must reside in and/or go to school within the boundaries of Prior Lake / Savage school district #719. If you do not meet this requirement you should contact the sport VP or Admin Director for clarification. Occasionally P.L.A.Y. has allowed those outside the district that are looking to participate in a non-traveling or tryout program, (In-House) if their area of residence or school does not provide that opportunity. However, 2nd grade-8th grade nearly all area communities do offer similar playing opportunities and you would not be allowed into the P.L.A.Y. program without prior clearance. P.L.A.Y. has the Right of Dismissal of any registration and removal of the participant (even if previously assigned to a team) if clearance has not been given in writing by P.L.A.Y. staff.
How did P.L.A.Y. get started? - Formed in late November of 1971 by parents that wanted to have a structured athletic program for their children. It began with Baseball in the Spring of 1972. That group of parents goal was to get more players involved in Baseball and Basketball at 5th-6th grade for boys. There were 60 total participants that first year. Girls sports of Softball and Basketball were added the following year. By the end of 2020 we will have 9 sports with nearly 5000 participants and nearly 1000 volunteers annually.
What sports does P.L.A.Y. offer? - Current offerings are Baseball, Softball, Track, Lacrosse, Tennis in Spring/Summer and Football, Volleyball, Cheer and Basketball in the Fall/Winter seasons.
When can a child get started? - There are some offerings for PreK-K and it goes through 8th grade in many sports. To find out specifics for your sport interest click on the "Sports" bar and then on left side, click on the sport of interest.
* PRE K'ers - MUST be 5 by Sept. 1st of that season.
What is the difference between “In-House” and ‘Traveling’?
– In-House are teams who play against other teams formed generally within the Prior Lake –Savage school district. Or Community teams. These teams play at various locations throughout the school district. They play with and against friends and classmates. There are variations of In-House programs at older ages with some playing nearby communities due to number of participants at a particular age group and sport. Practices and Games are in the evening starting at 6 or 7:15 - depending on sport and season.
Traveling – means that the team will participate in a League and/or Tournament play some within Prior Lake-Savage facilities – but at about 60+% of the time will travel to other communities generally within a 25 mile radius. Occasionally Tournaments are scheduled, where an overnight on a weekend is needed. Travel programs usually are more costly due to League and Tournaments fees. Also many times uniforms have to be within certain rule guidelines adding cost. Most summer time games start at either 6pm or 730pm with some tourney play starting Friday afternoons through Sunday afternoons.
When can I get my child in Traveling? – Traveling teams will begin at various ages and is based on available Leagues and facilities for that program. See the sport your interested in and Email the Sport Director more information. Some traveling Sports begin at about 10yrs old or 4th grade. Tryout evaluators are high school coaches or others outside the program. "Playing up" is not allowed, unless pre-approved by VP of Sport and Travel Directors and that Sports Board.
Where do I find other sports? - There are separate youth programs in the area for Soccer, Hockey, Wrestling, Swimming and Diving and other programs. Check out the “Links” bar on our website and scroll down to bottom of the page.
What are the primary goals of P.L.A.Y.? – To provide an opportunity for youth to participate in a sport to learn the game, develop physical, team and social skills, learn sportsmanship, and compete at a proper skill level. Players and Coaches should enjoy and have fun in sports they participate. While Parents support the coaches and whole team and enjoy rather than try to control their child's play.
Who does the coaching and organizing of the sports? – Coaches are generally parents of some the players on a team . But in some cases they are friends of a parent that has experience. Experience in the sport can help but in all of the beginning years - just gathering and given some basics is all that is needed. Each Sport has a Board, which is the primary decision maker for that program. They meet at least quarterly to plan, organize and get ready for the season. Coaches are always needed and you would always get matched up so your child is on your team.
Can I request my child’s coach? While it would be nice to be able to accommodate that type of request, it has proven over the years to put much stress on the volunteer coordinators and driven some individuals to the point of “selecting a team”. So while the volunteer Head Coaches can request 1 or 2 Asst. Coaches (varies with sport and level) the remainder of the team is picked randomly for all grade levels, either through date of birth, player rating or size (football). Traveling teams are selected through a variety of methods within that sports tryout format.
How do I become a coach? - You can become a coach by going through the following steps.
1) You must enter a Profile on the registration software
2) Go to 'Coaching' tab - on webpage
3) Complete the on-line Coaches Application
4) Complete on-line Background Check
5) Complete the Concussion Awareness Quiz
Ask your coordinator for more information.
6) We encourage the PCA way!
" Better Athletes - Better People"
Can anyone coach? - Those that clear the application process above and have a passion for coaching or helping are welcome. There are various levels of Coaches and experience – but willing to help all is the key. As a coach, the philosophy should be: 'Players First …Winning Second'. This stands for, consider ALL your players and those of your opponents needs for participation, development and safety – you can also keep the team goal on winning. Winning is great if done with honor, sincerity, pride and sportsmanship. Coaches are selected by the Coordinators of that sport.
Will P.L.A.Y. expand to other sports? – That is always a possibility, over the past decade, Lacrosse, Track, Cheer, and Tennis have been added. In the past sports like Golf and Gymnastics as well as others have been part of P.L.A.Y., i f there is a sport that you would like to get started the key is having a person behind the program that can recruit a few others and get involved. The P.L.A.Y. Executive Board and Administrative Director can help you from there. Just contact us to inquire how to start.
How do I learn more about the sport my child is interested in? – Click on the sports page in the bar at the top of this page.