Pleasant Surprises

As I worked to set up the ubiquitous orange cones and untangle the seemingly bottomless pile of flag football belts, I kept my eye on the reaction of the boys showing up to our first practice. What would they think when they were greeted by a pig-tailed teammate sporting the finest pink cleats Adidas sold?

Would they be alarmed? Unsure? Confused? Would it be a pleasant surprise?

As it turned out, it was a non-event. As only six-year-olds can do, they went with the flow, immediately accepting my daughter as a teammate and treating her as one of the boys. With a sigh of relief, I turned back to the task at hand and finished preparing the field for practice. As I untangled the last belt, I couldn’t help but smile. I love life’s pleasant surprises – those random, little events that sneak up on you and fill your soul with a warm fuzzy. Where would we be without them? I shudder to think – so I won’t.

Blowing the whistle, I went over and untangled the pile of kids that was my team (they were all piled on the ball for reasons that defy logic, unless you’re six) and we began what turned out to be a fun, productive season.

On the way home, my daughter took us down “chit-chat” lane as she rattled on about this boy and that boy and how much fun she had a practice and, “oh, by the way, can we go to Dairy Queen?”

Pulling into the drive-through, it struck me that it would be neat if we could provide you, our loyal reader, with a pleasant surprise every now and then – something that would fill your heart with a warm fuzzy or at least be useful.

Well, this month, I believe we’ve got something. First the warm fuzzy – which this month, as so often in the past, comes it the form of Ron Ciancutti’s monthly column titled simply “Hands.” Be prepared for a bit of emotion – you may want a Kleenex nearby and/or read it in private.

We’ve also got the useful part covered. This month we’ve launched a Digital Version of your favorite parks and recreation magazine. Located on our Web site ( or delivered to your e-mail In Box six times per year, the PRB Digital Edition makes it easier than ever to print, copy, share and/or forward our articles and content to your staff, board, colleagues, or friends quickly and easily.

The best part? It’s absolutely FREE – as in nada, zero, zip, zilch, no charge.

So, what’s the catch?

Well, in order to access the new Digital Edition you need to do one of two things:

1. Visit our Web site ( and click on the Digital Edition link or the title of the story you want to share

a. Click the button titled Send this Link to a Friend and follow the on-screen instructions.

2. Visit our Web site (, follow the Subscribe Today link on the left hand side of the page and sign up to receive your subscription digitally.

a. When you receive your Digital Edition, click on the button titled Send this Link to a Friend whenever you find a story you’d like to share and follow the on-screen instructions

It’s really that easy. I hope you like it.

Of course, if accessing and sharing our content digitally isn’t what you were hoping for this year, we’ve also tried to include a few editorial nuggets you can sink your teeth into (Nature’s Yucky Camp comes to mind).

As always, please drop me an e-mail or give me a call and let me know how we’re doing.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Rodney J. Auth


Bryan BuchkoComment