A dose of Dan: County sports talk from EDH Golf Course to EDHS ‘Wall of Fame’

By From page A5 | July 03, 2013

I love sports as much as the next guy, and of course, I also enjoy spirited debate. So I couldn’t avoid offering my own opinions on two sports-related debates brewing real-time in our fair county.

The first debate involves the El Dorado Hills Community Services District calling for a special meeting June 3 to discuss alternative uses for the former El Dorado Hills golf course. The second focuses on the relocation of the so-called “Wall of Fame” at El Dorado High, my alma mater.

Regarding the former El Dorado Hills golf course, the May 29 Mountain Democrat quotes EDHCSD Director Billy Vandegrift stating the community will “probably never see this opportunity again” to use the former 155-acre golf course to develop numerous sports fields and possibly an indoor sports facility for the region.

I couldn’t agree with Vandegrift more. The former golf course site could be transformed into a first-class sports complex for a community starving for field space. It doesn’t matter what sports your child participates in, the community is generally pinched for field space, particularly when it comes to scheduling practices.

And it’s not a knock on the EDHCSD — the organization does a fine job managing the facilities available to it. We could just use more for the volume of youth involved in various sports each season, ranging from football and lacrosse to soccer and baseball.

A sports complex on the old golf course site would preserve the land for public recreational use that so many of us once enjoyed playing casual golf on. A sports complex would also serve as a jewel for the community when it comes to hosting tournaments. We routinely travel to other communities for tournaments and frankly become a little jealous when we see the complexes they have managed to build.

The owner of the property, Parker Development, has other plans for the land in the form of a new housing development called Serrano Westside. The plans include a park with two soccer fields and a baseball diamond, and that’s great. But we have an opportunity to advocate to the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors to transform the land into something that much more special for the community. The meeting will be held at the EDHCSD Pavilion at 6:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, I’ve been following the community dialogue on the issue of the relocation of the “Wall of Fame” at EDHS, and I have to admit the issue has amused me. As a Cougar in the 1980s, many of my friends were part of the previous Wall of Fame before the creation of the new exhibit on campus.

I’m all for Cougar and community pride, but is this logical changing of the guard deserving of such uproar? Consider this: How come only all-league football players were previously recognized? I know football is the largest revenue-generating sport, but what about all-league athletes in other sports? What about female all-league athletes? What about using existing wall space to promote current athletes, not some guys with moustaches and mullets from the ‘80s?

Next, the Wall of Fame exhibit looks pretty classy to me. I haven’t seen it in person yet, my fellow Cougar classmate sent me a picture of it, but I’d be proud to have my name on it.

And come to think of it, I was an all-league Cougar my senior year in baseball, but I’m not bent out of shape none of our baseball pictures or names are on display. For the athletes talented, dedicated and fortunate enough to make all-league, enjoy it, revel in the moment and take pride in the achievement. Then move on. The achievement was attained in high school — you have your entire adult life to make a positive impact on the community again and again.

Dan Francisco is an El Dorado Hills-based public relations consultant to the high-tech industry. 

Dan Francisco


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