About the Club
The San Diego Sparks Soccer Club is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, predominantly gay, social organization that provides people an opportunity to play soccer in a positive and friendly environment. Leslie Randolph founded the club in 1986 in order to promote active participation and tolerance in the sport of soccer. Since then, we have enjoyed over sixteen years of great soccer, fun, and friendship. Club membership is open to everyone. We do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, gender, color, religion, national origin, handicapping condition, or sexual orientation.
“This team is about more than just soccer.”
— Past Team Captain, C. Larson
Becoming a Member of the Club
The number of players in the club has no limit. Anyone with a good, supportive attitude, and a love of soccer may become a member of the club. Annual club dues are required. Club dues pay for evening practice lights, equipment, social events, and administrative costs. Club dues are due at the beginning of official practices and are to be paid to the club treasurer. Club dues are set each year by the club leadership but typically runs around $40.
Becoming a Member of the Team
The Sparks Soccer Team is part of the larger Sparks Soccer Club (please note the difference between Team and Club). The Team plays annually in the San Diego Men’s Soccer League. The season typically begins the first or second week of October, and will run to the middle of May. The local Columbus Cup tournament begins at the end of the season. If we do decide to enter the tournament, playing will continue to the middle of June. Further, we plan on sending a team to the annual IGLFA World Cup Tournament (location and dates to be announced). Practices are held every Friday evening. It is very important that everyone comes to practice. This is the best way to improve the team’s soccer abilities. After practice, the team typically enjoys going out for a drink at our Sponsor Bar. Sometime during practice a questionnaire will be handed out asking if you would like to be considered for the Team roster. In order to play on the Team you must pay the club dues (typically $40 for the season), plus league fees of $230, broken down into two $115 payments.
More About the Sparks Soccer Team:
- The Sparks Soccer Team has a more competitive approach where skill level is emphasized versus a more recreational approach where equal playing time by all team members is stressed.
- The Team Coach makes up the line-up and coordinates substitutions.
- The Coach will try his best to give everyone at least 15 minutes of playing time per game. However, no guarantees are made depending on how each game plays out.
Some requirements to play on the Team are:
- Support: You are a member of the Sparks Soccer Club, and have read and are supportive of the articles and principles of which the Club was founded.
- Dues: You must pay the Club and Team dues. If you have financial hardship you can talk to the Team Manager to work out a payment structure.
- Attitude: A good, positive attitude. This includes being a team player, getting along with fellow members, putting forth your best effort while playing and practicing. As well as, being supportive of each other on and off the field.
- Communication: Communicating effectively with the Team Manager and Coach to let them know when you will not be able to make a game or practice. If they are not available in person, leave a message for them. This also includes communicating effectively with each team member on and off the field.
The Coach may use the following factors to determine playing time:
- Skill level, including passing, trapping, shooting, goal saving, knowledge of the game and positioning.
- Showing up to practice, including being on time and suited up to play.
- Off the field contributions, including fund raising, laundering of the uniforms and other club-related activities done off the field.
- Timeliness, being at games at least one-half hour before kick-off, and coming to practice on time.
Even though the current Team as it exists today may have a limit, it is extremely important to know that our goal is to create a Club that makes room for everyone, using everyone’s talents and spirits to form a fun and successful group of friends.