I canít believe that I almost let a very important
anniversary pass without mention.
One week ago, on Nov. 1, LakesAreaSports.com had its 1-year
anniversary. A lot of people say
the 1st year of owning and operating your own business is the
hardest. Well, it wasnít always
easy, and it can be very stressful.
But starting this site has allowed me to do what I love doing most. Covering sports. And Iíve been able to do it in an area
Iíve come to call home, the Lakes Area.
A lot of you probably know my story, and can understand when
I say 2010 was a very difficult year for me. But 2011 has been one of the most rewarding, and I have a
lot of people to thank.
This site never would have happened if not for several very
important people. I have to start
with Craig Olson, who gave me an opportunity to basically branch off his
fantastic site. Craig has always
been positive and encouraging, and Iíll never forget his support. Along those same lines, I need to thank
Darren Rogness, my ďweb guyĒ. He
did a great job designing my site, and is always there when little problems and
glitches arise. Darren works for
the Minnesota Sports Online Network, run by Ryan Phelps. Iím happy and privileged to be part of
this great, and ever expanding network.
Obviously, without my advertisers, this site wouldnít be
possible. Several jumped on board
at the start, basically trusting my history and reputation that Iíd be able to
get this site going. Iíll always
appreciate the faith those advertisers had in me. It started with Kenny Nelson and KLN Family Brands. Kenny was supportive from the 1st
meeting, and hasnít wavered since.
United Community Bank and Perham Health were also on board very early
on, as were ACS, New Horizons Realty and Mulliganís as the Athlete of the Week
Within 2 months, several more had jumped on board and things
were on their way. I still have a
few great spots available if any businesses out there are interested!
It helps that Iíve had great sports to cover. One of my 1st official trips
for the site was the 2010 State Cross Country Meet, where the Jacket boys won
their 3rd State title.
Over the winter, Perham gymnastics continued their historic dominance,
the Perham boys basketball team made history with a title, and the Frazee
wrestlers maintained their local dynasty with another championship.
I have to thank my family for understanding the odd, and
sometimes long hours I put in to making this site a success, and to keep people
coming back. I spend an awful lot
of time in my little office in the corner of the basement, peaking my head out
just enough to make sure all is well in the world. Thanks Kathy, Danni and Max. I love you all so much.
With one person trying to cover all the various sports at 3
high schools, obviously not every event can be attended in person. A site like this wouldnít work without
the tremendous cooperation from all the coaches.
They donít seem to get too aggravated when I send them
e-mail after e-mail, or a text or phone call. And most understand and appreciate that Iím trying to get
the info out ASAP after each event, and they oblige with phone calls, texts and
e-mails the night of, or the morning after, each event. THANKS!
Along those lines, if any students, team managers, or even
parents want to be a LakesAreaSports.com SID and help report scores and stats
or submit photos, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Although I make my meek living from my advertisers, I kind
of see myself as working for the coaches, and the schools. My job is to get information out about
them. Their teams. Their events. Their schools.
And last, but certainly not least, I have to thank YOU, the
thousands of people who are regular visitors to LakesAreaSports.com. Hit counts have increased in 10 of the
12 months Iíve been in operation (the summer was kind of steady). Story counts are rising, facebook and
twitter followers are going up, and plenty of you have taken advantage of the
photos on Shutterfly.
Another thing that I was very nervous about, and have been
pleasantly surprised by, is that a lot of you are hitting the ads on my site,
and going to visit the various businesses online. I really appreciate that, and Iím sure my customers
appreciate it as well.
Hereís to hoping this is the 1st of many years covering
sports in the Lakes Area. THANKS
AGAIN, everybody! I couldnít have
done it without you!