Tinker Air Force Base Youth Center (Okla.) Excellence in Youth Sports Award winner for second time


Tinker Air Force Base Youth Center (Okla.) was one of five organizations worldwide selected to receive the prestigious Excellence in Youth Sports Award last December at the 2008 Youth Sports Congress in San Antonio, Texas. Presented by the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) and Athletic Business magazine, the annual award recognizes special organizations that operate diverse youth sports programs that focus on providing positive and safe experiences for all participants.
A winner of the 2006 Excellence in Youth Sports Awards, Tinker Air Force Base Youth Center joined a select group of youth sports organizations who have received this honor twice.
Tinker Air Force Base Youth Center provides sports programming for the children living on Tinker Air Force Base. They offer a variety of educational, social, recreational and physical programs for children ages 3-18, such as a community membership program for pre-teens ages 9-12 and teens ages 13-18, a school age program to assist working parents, a sports and fitness program, as well as various instructional classes.
Along with traditional youth sports like baseball and basketball, the children living on Tinker Air Force Base have the opportunity to experience such physical activities as kayaking, golf and cheerleading.
“Our philosophy is to support the Air Force by providing year-round programs and activities to develop youth fitness, cultural diversity, respect, self esteem and remaining drug- and alcohol-free by allowing all youth to participate and enjoy regardless of skill level,” said Mindy Whittington, sports director for the Tinker Youth Center.
They also mandate that all of their youth sports coaches are trained and certified by the National Youth Sports Coaches Association (NYSCA), a volunteer coaches training program offered by NAYS.
Other 2008 Excellence Award recipients were USAG Fort Belvoir (Va.), City of Clearwater Parks and Recreation (Fla.), City of Evans Parks & Recreation (Colo.) and Hickam Air Force Base Youth Sports (Hawaii).
Each winning community received:
  • A financial award and in-kind contributions from Award sponsors to be used for the support and enhancement of the winning entry’s youth sports program.
  • National, state and local recognition, including the publications of Athletic Business and the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS).
  • A custom award to be displayed in the home facility.
  • One complimentary registration for the NAYS Youth Sports Congress held in conjunction with the Athletic Business Conference in San Antonio, Texas, December 3-6, 2008.
  • Recognition at the 2008 NAYS Youth Sports Congress and the Athletic Business Conference & Expo
The awards was presented by Tom Farrey, veteran investigative journalist, author and ESPN reporter.

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