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pwb
September 27th, 2011, 04:23 PM
So I've managed to get myself made meet director for a USAS meet. In trying to make this interesting for the kids, I'd love ideas from forumites who swam age group or who have kids swimming these days --


What cool stuff should we get for the goodie bags?
What unique awards should we have for ...

Heat winners ... e.g., I remember going to a "top banana" meet in NC growing up where we got a banana for heat winner
High points ... e.g., the coolest high point award I got was a nice swim bag from the Rowdy Gaines Masters meet a couple of years ago



I'd love feasible ideas (e.g., we're on a budget and/or we'll beg local businesses for donations) that will ideally pump the kids up and make them want to come back year after year.

no200fly
September 27th, 2011, 04:57 PM
What unique awards should we have for ...



I still remember, when I was a kid, swimming in a meet at SMU and Bob Lilly (Dallas Cowboys probowl lineman) gave out medals at the awards ceremony (this was a long time ago when they still had awards ceremonies).

Maybe you could get donations from other athletes'/teams' publicity departments.

jaadams1
September 27th, 2011, 05:36 PM
Our USAS meets here in the summer get a bunch of "cheapo" water bottles made up printed with the meet logo/date on them. Enough for 1 per athlete or so entered.

There were plenty of extra so I may have got a few extra for the kids at home too :D

Karl_S
September 27th, 2011, 05:52 PM
At a small USMS meet a few years ago the "goody bag" was one of those cloth bags where the draw strings, when cinched closed, form backpack straps so the bag can be worn like a backpack. I find myself using it a lot for carrying towels, flip flops, goggles etc. I have found it useful and like it a lot, but my daughter has once from her summer league, one from camp, etc... so maybe most kids already have one or more.

nkfrench
September 27th, 2011, 06:10 PM
For younger kids, my inner child says anything from oriental trading co that you won't mind seeing in the trash, pool drain, pool deck, parking lot.

It sure was easier when I was 15. Each meet had a custom embroidered patch that we sewed on our warmups. Tried that a few years ago and it was a bust

Karl_S
September 27th, 2011, 07:35 PM
It sure was easier when I was 15. Each meet had a custom embroidered patch that we sewed on our warmups. Tried that a few years ago and it was a bust
That was such a great tradition. We were always in awe of the kids whose warmup jackets were covered with patches. The fastest swimmers always seemed to have an unbelievable number of patches, usually complemented with those "A", "AA", "AAA", and "AAAA" patches for various events.

bjcarter
September 27th, 2011, 07:46 PM
Best award I ever saw at a AAU/USS meet was the high point awards at the Texas Open at UT. They were a set of mounted Longhorn horns. More recently, I won a bottle of wine for placing a Napa Valley open water event (probably not feasible for a youth meet!). Awards that personalize a location are always a hit in my mind...

swimshark
September 27th, 2011, 09:28 PM
At a masters meet they gave out free burger coupons to the heat winners (local NW burger place). The motto of the meat was "it was all about the burger"/

Growing up I loved the pins. I still have all of my meet and stroke pins. One is on my bag even now.

pwb
September 27th, 2011, 10:30 PM
Thanks for the ideas so far. Yeah, I remember the pins and the patches, but the kids don't get into those. The kids are so virtual and digital ... not sure what would connect between swimming and their electronic world? Free song downloads?

swimshark
September 28th, 2011, 06:44 AM
Thanks for the ideas so far. Yeah, I remember the pins and the patches, but the kids don't get into those. The kids are so virtual and digital ... not sure what would connect between swimming and their electronic world? Free song downloads?

A free song download is a good idea. I can tell you the kids I workout with love the bag tags. They love being able to add to their collection. Sort of a "look what I've done". I'm not sure how that would work with the heats but the bag tags are a good goodie bag idea.

chowmi
September 28th, 2011, 08:17 AM
To help raise money, everything is for sale. You could ask local businesses to sponsor events and be printed above the event, say $25.00 per and be announced at the start, during, and conclusion of the event. You could have $1.00 SHOUT OUTS! Where kids could fill out a slip and SHOUT OUT to their friends good luck, etc.

How old are the kids? When is the meet? Towels, t-shirts, mugs. Even stuffed animals. Maybe it could be wearing a meet t-shirt. I got the coolest stuffed animal at a Goldman Sachs convention. It was a REVERSABLE bear and bull and wore a GS Internet conference T-shirt.

ALM
September 28th, 2011, 10:42 AM
There is an open water swim here in Florida that gives out little rubber duckies for the awards. If you could get something like that, especially if it could be hung or attached to their swim bags, that might be a hit...

cheakamus
October 1st, 2011, 12:24 PM
When I showed up for the Northwest "Senior" Games last spring, I got a goody bag that included various items of marginal utility, emblazoned with the logos of various hospitals, retirement homes, investment advisors, drug manufacturers you get the picture (no funeral plots though!) Maybe you could find similar sponsors whose merchandizing is targeted to your specific age group.

pwb
October 1st, 2011, 02:28 PM
There is an open water swim here in Florida that gives out little rubber duckies for the awards. If you could get something like that, especially if it could be hung or attached to their swim bags, that might be a hit...
That's a good idea ... wonder if the kids will like rubber replicas of rattlesnakes to keep with our desert environment?:afraid:

ALM
October 1st, 2011, 10:06 PM
That's a good idea ... wonder if the kids will like rubber replicas of rattlesnakes to keep with our desert environment?:afraid:

They probably would!

The place to get any of that sort of stuff is U.S. Toy. They sell all the carnival supply type stuff. For example, here are four pages of various ducks, some that are about $0.50 apiece:

http://search.ustoy.com/search?w=ducks&submit.x=34&submit.y=20

And if it's snakes you want, they have four pages of them:

http://search.ustoy.com/search?w=snakes&submit.x=17&submit.y=28

cheakamus
October 1st, 2011, 11:24 PM
Or for something a little different:

http://www.mcphee.com/shop/