From time to time I like to sit down and organize my thoughts about DKCU. Between being a husband, a dad, my day job, the club, and league responsibilities if can all sort of run together. It allows me time to reflect and helps me keep our supporters informed of developments, changes, plans, or anything else that needs to be communicated. So here it is once again...
In recent weeks we've concluded our open tryout process for the 2020 season. Our first team roster is set and we're just waiting on media day to get those players announced. About half of the roster will be returning players which means there are lots of new faces to get to know. With some logistical changes this year, players will each have a uniform number and it won't change so you'll get more comfortable with the name and number on the back of the shirts. (This was something fans asked for over the past few years.)
Our men's and women's under-23 sides are taking shape also, but with their campaigns not kicking off until late May we've got some time to finalize those things. Overall we're optimistic about the 2020 season with over 50% of players on our rosters living in or are from DeKalb County. So we're proud of the connection we've made with local players.
Speaking of local...we launched our second 815 Beverage with a brand new roast coffee from Barb City Roasters. I spent some time with Abby, Jack and Mark and I really connected with their mission driven project and their passion for coffee. A portion of all "815 United Grounds" supports DKCU so order a few pounds when you get a chance and support two local organizations each morning.
I know there's a lot of questions about when our schedule will be out. The DKCU league schedule is complete and will be released soon in conjunction with other clubs. There may be one or two more friendlies added but we're really excited about the opponents on the docket for this season including one professional squad that will test us for sure. And we'll once again be competing in the Illinois State Cup tournament as well and hoping for a deep run toward the trophy.
BANNER DRIVE - SPONSORS
We've never tried a sponsorship campaign like this so we figured it was time. With a number of businesses interested in supporting us, banner sponsors have been popular through our first two seasons. It allows a company to support at an affordable $250. We decided it was a good time to challenge the community to help us meet a goal to find 31 banner sponsors in 31 days of March. We're underway, so if you want to have your business advertised at all DKCU home games in 2020 reach out to Ramneek at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In mid-February we hosted our second annual futsal tournament. (That's basically indoor soccer on a gym floor.) This year we worked with the Sycamore Park District to use two courts at the Community Center and it helped things flow a little bit better. We did send a survey out to all teams to get their feedback as well. Thanks to all the teams that competed in that event and we look forward to next year!
SUPPORTERS GROUP - LOCAL 815
We've got a new supporters group forming now. They will be fun to watch grow and they are looking for more energetic followers to help grow our home-field advantage. If you're interested in hooking up with them get in touch with us and we'll connect you.
Later this month we'll launch a brand new team/fan/supporter store. There will be lots of new merchandise including customizable replica jerseys and lots of fun stuff. Keep an eye out for that in late March or early April.
MIDWEST PREMIER LEAGUE
As you may have seen, the modest regional league we helped start last fall is growing again. With 6 teams on the west side of Lake Michigan, we've welcomed some new clubs from the other side to put together an East Division. In March we're hosting the first ever MWPL annual meeting right here in DeKalb County. While my own involvement with the league has been a bit more time than I'd hoped, I'm confident that the club-league parternships for all members clubs will allow us a greater chance for long term sustainability. We're going to have some really fun things happening within the league so if you're not following along on social media please do! Lots of banter to stir up those rivalries. (This is mostly thanks to Local 815!)