The SRWAC volleyball league invites new members to join them on Wednesday evenings at the Scripps Ranch Recreation Center.Â (photo by Cynthia Kurose)
Women’s Athletic Club: spirited, friendly games
The Scripps Ranch Women’s Athletic Club (SRWAC) has been in existence for more than two decades, yet, it seems the organization is still relatively unknown among members of the community. Offering a mix of sports, socializing and service to the community, the non-profit is continually looking to attract more members.
According to SRWAC President Mary Lawler, the organization “was born out of the wives of Old Pros wanting their own social club. They formed SRWAC in order to have sports leagues in addition to social activities.”
The group started out with soccer as its main league and has since expanded to include volleyball, basketball, and co-ed softball leagues.
Erin Rowland is registrar for SRWAC softball and has been playing in the league with her husband for 20 years.
“It’s a great way to get to know other people in Scripps. It’s been super fun,” Rowland said.
Softball games at Sycamore Canyon Park are “like family night. Everyone is out there, they bring their kids, they all have their bikes, they’re all playing together outside and they’re so happy. And of course, the parents are having fun,” she said.
While there is certainly room for spirited, friendly competition, according to Rowland, the leagues are generally more recreational and social in nature.
“It’s super laid back. There are players from all skill levels,” and often, conversation following games is more about “who is bringing drinks and snacks next time,” she said.
SRWAC leagues run throughout the year, offering opportunities for local women to remain active during any season. Softball runs throughout the summer; soccer plays January through June, then August through December; and both basketball and volleyball play all year long. All sports meet on weekday evenings.
Part of what sets SRWAC apart from other leagues, Lawler said, is that “people can sign up as individuals. In most other leagues, you need to be invited or already have formed a team. We also invite people of all athletic abilities to participate,” she said.
Another differentiator the group is proud to claim is their service to the community. As a non-profit organization, once operating expenses have been accounted for, all remaining funds collected from membership dues are spent on sponsoring high school sports teams, including softball, soccer, water polo, as well as youth sports in the community. Additionally, each April, the organization selects between two and four graduating high school senior female athletes to receive scholarships to help finance their higher education.
The organization also sponsors local events like the annual Symphony in the Park, and takes an active role in community fairs and the Scripps Ranch Fourth of July Parade.
“We’re trying to do more activities and get more people to know about us,” Rowland said. “There are a lot of athletically-minded women out there who maybe don’t know about the organization, and we’d love for them to join.”
Lawler shares Rowland’s enthusiasm for recruiting more members, adding that she would also love for more members to become involved in organization leadership and join the SRWAC Board.
“We’re always looking for more women to join the board and to come to our social events,” she said. “We like to go to Sanctuary to have our board meeting, and have everybody come out and play pool and darts. A lot of us have been on the board for a long time and it’s awesome when new people join. We welcome new blood and new ideas.”
Annual membership dues for SRWAC are $41.20 per year, and members are offered a discount for every sport they choose to play. More information is available at srwac.org.