Hurricane Relief for Harvey and Irma **Updated**


Infinity Gymnastics Open Gym
Sue McNamara Brosnan
Mary Lou Achman
Cindy Morano
Hilary Carlson
Region 5 Trivia (Stacey Broderick, Judy Harwood, Hilary Carlson, Kim and Norbert Bendixen, Christie Kerns, Barb Dunn)
Extreme Kids


Below is a letter from Florida USA Gymnastics

To Florida clubs

As things are getting back to normal for most of you I wanted to give you another update on the status of some of our clubs

There are still some areas that do not have power – the hope is that by Friday everyone (except for the Keys) should have power restored and then those clubs can get back to business – the good news is that the vast majority of our clubs have come thru the storm with minimal damage – I know that many of you will need to figure ways to make up classes and hopefully most of your clients were ok too so that they are able to continue going to the gym.

Unfortunately some of you may see a drop in numbers over the next month or so – I can tell you that I experienced this back in 2005 with Hurricane Wilma and found that after a month or so the numbers picked up again – In addition back in 2005 the federal government also offered a tax credit for payroll paid during and after the Hurricane – I do not know if this is something that will be done again but you can check with your accountants if there is any assistance from the federal government in the way of tax credits or special deductions that may be able to help you –
In any case I am so pleased that Florida has been so lucky as the damage could have been so much worse –

I do have to say that the Florida government, the first responders, the Federal government and the utility companies all did a great job of warning and putting things in place to assist after the storm – The power came back fairly quickly to most areas due to workers from all over the country being staged in safe areas to move in immediately – I know if you do not have power yet it does not seem that it is getting done fast enough but when you consider that 15 million were without power at one time then you have to understand what a huge undertaking this is –
As for the first responders – My son in law is a K-9 sheriff here in Florida – he was out during the storm from 10:00pm – 8:00am the night it hit – My daughter and granddaughter stayed over at my other daughters with us so she would not be alone – His job as well as the other officers that were out that night was to clear roads (they were given chain saws) and to prevent crime and looting – as well as to assist anyone that may needed help – I am sure that we had police, fireman, National guard all over the state doing the same thing – so special thanks to all of them

However, unfortunately we do have a few clubs that have sustained some major damage. Key West Sports in Key West lost the roof on the building and sustained very heavy damage to all contents – Right now the Keys are just trying to get some power back, water lines restored and with over 25% of buildings completely damaged there is a lot of clean up to do – It will be some time until we hear what the gym plans to do but I will try to keep in touch with them

Gymnastics World in Ft Myers flooded over 2 weeks ago – before Hurricane Irma – was not open yet when the Hurricane hit but was flooded again
Lightning city has been working with them on obtaining equipment and we heard that FEMA may be able to assist as well – the gym did not have content insurance so they may need some assistance –
Tim Keckler with Lightning city has offered to assist as needed for both gyms – he will keep me posted if I do not hear directly from either of these gyms

We have also had offers of assistance as well as much concern from the USA gymnastic National office – the GAT(Texas) fund that was set up to assist Hurricane Harvey will open up its funds to clubs in Florida that may need help – USA gymnastic Illinois has also offered to help with funds if anyone needs some help – I know all of you join me in thanking them for their concern and offers to help – and I know even as we deal with our own issues here we still remember that our friends in Texas are also struggling to get back to normal and wish them a fast recovery – Texas Strong
GK is also working on a leotard with 100% proceeds going to the Red Cross for Hurricane Irma victims – watch for Florida Fierce

As we watch Hurricane Maria hitting the islands today and tomorrow I am very concerned for our friends there – thankfully for Florida, the storm looks like it will take a turn to the right and will not hit the east coast of Florida – but keep an eye on the forecasts as we all know that these storms can have a mind of their own –

I have not heard of any other Meet cancellations so I anticipate that the meets that are scheduled this weekend will be held –
I hope you all have a good week – again if you need anything please let me know – Again I am so thankful that most of us came thru this so well

Toni Rand
Florida USA Gymnastics