For those of you who participated in past leagues, you already understand the value of the association's sports played throughout the year, such as basketball, softball, and kickball — yes, kickball.
For those of you who have yet to join us, the sports leagues offer an opportunity for local attorneys and their staffs and families to interrupt the day-to-day grind and reignite the competitive child within.
For the past several years, the section has organized multiple sports leagues that offer important physical and mental outlets for hundreds of attorneys throughout the community.
Regardless of how that trial turned out or whether the deal was done, if you kicked an in-the-park home run to win your JBA kickball game, ultimately the day was a win.
The leagues generate important networking opportunities beyond the typical social and professional events and serve as a healthy way to release some endorphins and shake off a long day of legal work.
This season the section will offer three main sports leagues: a fall softball league, spring kickball league and summer basketball league.
All leagues are co-ed and limited to The JBA members, their staffs and families, as well as a limited number of non-member "ringers."
Games are scheduled on weeknights and all leagues include a regular season and postseason playoff.
Each league lasts for about 10 weeks, which incorporates the regular season and playoffs.
The winning team from each league takes home a trophy, which the team keeps and can parade throughout town until next season when it can defend its right to keep the trophy for another year.
Games for all three leagues take place in close proximity to Downtown, which promotes easy access and participation.
The leagues are competitive, but the atmosphere always is casual. We do not tolerate unsportsmanlike conduct.
Starting this season, teams and players will be able to find information about the sports leagues on The JBA website, jaxbar.org. The website will have details such as rules, registration deadlines and payment information.
We also hope to post pictures of the leagues throughout each season to capture The JBA in action.
We encourage firms to sign up as teams, but the leagues also thrive on a healthy free-agency program that offers individual association members the opportunity to connect with other members and make a case for solo practitioners and smaller firms.
As with any league, participation is crucial.
If you are interested in playing, we will work hard to put you on a team.
The JBA slow-pitch softball league is the first league of the season and is scheduled to start in September.
All teams must register by Sept. 4.
You can register a team by designating a team captain, submitting your team roster to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and paying the registration fee.
If you are an individual looking for a team, please contact me and I will help you organize a team or join an existing team.
As always, we encourage feedback about the leagues and input on what we can do to make existing leagues better.
We also seek your input about the possible inclusion of new sports such as volleyball, soccer, flag football or any other sports you might be interested in.
If you have any questions or comments about the leagues, please feel free to contact me.
Don't be shy, come out and play! I look forward to seeing you out there.
Professional and college football seasons are upon us, the golf majors recently finished, baseball postseason is around the corner and, most importantly, we are entering a new year for The Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section sports leagues.