Message Regarding Naperville Youth Basketball from the Executive Director
Wednesday, September 14, 2022
Earlier this week the Park District kicked off registration for the Naperville Park District's fall and winter sessions of the popular youth basketball program. Over the past several years as interest in the program has grown, staff have worked to identify additional practice locations to accommodate more teams. Each year the league has expanded because of those efforts. Currently, the success of the program and our ability to expand relies heavily upon Naperville's two school districts, as most practices occur during the week in school gymnasiums. The school districts have been tremendous partners, and we continue to work with school administrators to secure gym time.
This week we have been fielding concerns from residents regarding basketball registration, as many teams filled quickly, which resulted in large waitlists for some of the grade levels. This is largely due to a significant spike in youth basketball registrations, with first week 2022 registrations up 29% compared to total registrations in fall 2021, and up 62% compared to total registrations in fall 2019 (the league did not run in 2020). This growth equates to over 380 more players wanting to participate in the program compared to last year, and over 650 more players compared to 2019. This is a significant increase to manage, and we are working to respond to the demand.
Our staff have started the process of identifying opportunities to expand the program to accommodate as many waitlisted players as possible. This is being accomplished through working with the school districts to secure additional gym space for practices, as well as cancelling or combining teams that do not meet minimum requirements for the number of players. In addition, we will be cancelling some of our other programs that are currently scheduled in gymnasiums, but have not reached minimum requirements for participation, to provide more space for youth basketball. Over the next several weeks we will contact as many waitlisted players as possible to provide opportunities to join teams where openings exist. Our goal, as it is with every youth sports program, is to provide kids who want to participate with an opportunity to do so.
Please feel free to contact Brad Wilson, Executive Director, at 630-848-3532 or via email at email@example.com with questions regarding the Park District's efforts to address the growth of the youth basketball program.
We appreciate your patience and understanding as well as your support of the Naperville Park District.