Torrey Pines Pop Warner & Cheer: TOUCHDOWN
Torrey Pines Pop Warner Football and Cheer (TPPW) has been a household name in the 92130 community for over a decade. The organization is committed to providing each athlete, both football and cheer, with an enjoyable, action-packed and engaging experience. TPPW prides itself on developing athletic skills and coordination while stressing the importance of scholastic achievement for all participants. President, Andy Vanderwiel and Cheer Coordinator, Sarah Wentworth share their enthusiasm for the upcoming season that kicks off with practices on Aug. 1. With the combined programs growing to over 500 participants this season, the Falcons are looking to yield championship teams.
What is the history behind Torrey Pines Pop Warner (TPPW)?
Vanderwiel: It was created in 2002 by a group of parents whose kids attended and lived in the area of Torrey Pines High School (TPHS). The program, at that time, was under the San Dieguito Pop Warner program that provided a tackle and cheer program for kids who were residents of Carmel Valley and La Costa Canyon. Needing a program closer to home due to the commute, these parents stepped up and started the program with the help of the high school athletic program. Ed Burke was very instrumental in helping it get off the ground.
What is the traditional season for TPPW?
Vanderwiel: Practices begin Aug. 1 and games begin the first week of September. Each team plays a 10 game schedule. Teams at the competitive levels participate in playoff games to [hopefully] reach the Palomar Conference championship games.
What is the mission of the TPPW organization as a whole?
Vanderwiel: We are organized under the state laws of California as a non-profit organization for the purpose of assisting the youth in and around the areas of Carmel Valley, Rancho Santa Fe and Del Mar. TPPW inspires youth regardless of race, creed or national origin, in forming ideals of sportsmanship, honesty, loyalty, courage and in molding future men and women. The organization seeks to develop athletic skills and coordination through a competitive football program, and to stress the importance of scholastic achievement.
What is your role as president and how did you become involved?
Vanderwiel: I provide general supervision and manage all of the business matters and affairs. I started as an assistant coach about 16 years ago when the league was San Dieguito Pop Warner. My goal as president is to assure the longevity of TPPW for the purpose of serving our community for years to come.
What’s the drawing point for a young athlete to want to participate in the organization?
Vanderwiel: Participating in a community program with their friends that will eventually connect them to the local high school programs.
What do the registration fees include?
Vanderwiel: Fees include official uniforms for football and cheer. The games are official with live scoring by referees and played in stadiums.
Does TPPW hold any fundraisers?
Vanderwiel: Spirit Day is our largest fundraiser of the season. We need auctions items and anything else that we can raffle to make money at this event.
Are there any new developments community members should be aware of that will impact the season?
Vanderwiel: A bond has been passed that will grant TPHS about $90 million in upgrades to the campus in the next three years.
What is the most unique thing about TPPW compared to other programs?
Vanderwiel: We are connected to one of the most successful high school programs in San Diego County.
Tell us about your coaching staff.
Vanderwiel: All head coaches and one assistant must be first aid and CPR trained to be considered for a coaching spot. There are also mandatory coaching clinics before the start of the season that must be completed by the head coach before the team can take the field on 1.
Since the organization is not for profit, how do you go about receiving necessary funds to keep it running?
Vanderwiel: We generate funds through registration, sponsorships and Spirit Day. Those funds pay for uniforms, practice equipment, field space and so forth.
Are you hosting any clinics in the coming months or in to the summer?
Vanderwiel: We support the annual Jr. Falcon Football Program at TPHS each year in the summer. We will post the details on our website when they become available.
Tell us about the scholarship programs and Little Scholars program you have available.
Vanderwiel: We have scholarships opportunities for any child who needs them based on parent income. The Little Scholars program recognizes boys and girls who have an average GPA of 3.7 or higher. A banquet is held for these recipients each year to recognize their efforts in the classroom.
What is the outlook for the 2013 season?
Vanderwiel: We are very excited to see our cheer and football programs grow to over 500 participants this season. We believe our program will yield championship teams in both football and cheer. Cheer is coming off a back-to-back season with national championship teams. It is going to be an exciting season.
What is the mission of the TPPW Cheer organization as a whole?
WENTWORTH: TPPW Cheer is fun, challenging and an opportunity to make lasting friendships. Our objective is to familiarize young participants with the fundamentals and safety of cheerleading. We aim to instill the importance of teamwork and responsibility and to provide team members the opportunity to participate and advance in the sport of competitive cheerleading in an organized, adult supervised and safety-minded environment.
WENTWORTH: To become a part of our cheer family is really quite simple. Online registration is now open at www.torreypinespw.com. Any child residing within the boundaries of TPHS is eligible to participate if they are between the ages of five and 15 years old as of July 31, 2012.
What is your role as cheer coordinator? How did you become involved with the organization?
WENTWORTH: I became involved with TPPW about seven years ago when I was approached by a friend to aide her squad as an assistant coach. Being a former cheerleader myself,
I was extremely interested in joining a program that would bring young girls into a sport that I have always been so fond of. My main goal as cheer coordinator is to continue promoting the cheer program in a positive and highly respected manor, as done in the past. I want to make sure that our program continues to grow and the rising success of cheerleading as a sport carries on every year.
Tell us about a typical season for TPPW Cheer and what to expect as a participant.
WENTWORTH: Our season begins around the week of Aug. 1. We do have many competitive cheer squads that participate sometimes through the end of January. Cheerleading is a highly unique sport that depends on 100% commitment of each participant. There are no substitute positions or players in cheerleading – the squad as a whole depends on each of their teammates equally.
What is the practice and game schedule commitment?
WENTWORTH: Practice commitment varies between squads based on age and also the head coach’s discretion. For our Mitey Mite to Midget age levels, practices are usually three or four days a week for two hours each day. For our younger squads, practices are usually two or three days a week and no longer than two hours each day. Every cheer squad is required to attend and participate in each football game for their assigned team. Football games are on Saturdays that usually begin at the end of August and continue through the end of October. There are roughly 10 or 11 football games in each season.
Does TPPW Cheer hold any fundraisers?
WENTWORTH: Fundraising is organized by each squad, individually. TPPW highly encourages each head coach to arrange as many fundraising events as possible to help with individual team expenses that incur throughout the season. Fundraising is critical for our competitive squads as there is usually traveling at some point during their season and any money raised by each individual team helps offset those additional costs.[tabs style=”1″] [tab title=” 2013 Board of Directors”]
President: Andy Vanderwiel
Vice President: Christy Mohler
Treasurer: Mark Notarainni
Secretary: Melissa Pedersen
Football Player Agent: Christian Hastings
Cheer Coordinator: Sarah Wentworth
Coaches Agent: Sarah Wentworth
Cheer Player Agent: Tammy Davilla
Fields Coordinator/Security: Rob Beasley
Football Coaches Agent: Sean Doheny
Football Equipment Manager: Ed Graubart
Cheer Equipment Manager: Nikki Katz
Volunteer Coordinator: Maria Kish
Spirit Wear/Spirit Day: Cindy Braun
Little Scholar’s/Concessions: Greg Parker
Fundraising/PR: Brian Guiltinan
Football Player Agent Asst.: Camille Hastings[/tab] [tab title=”2013 Season Stats”]
# of teams: 14
# of football players: 280
Age range: 5 – 13
# of divisions: 7
# games scheduled to play: 160
# of footballs to be used: 450
# of cheer squads: 6
# of cheerleaders: 90
# of pom-poms: 180
# of cheers and dances learned: 40
# of volunteers: 40 every season
# of coaches: 60 every season[/tab] [tab title=”2013 Gold Sponsors”]
Darryl & Carolyn Flaming
Believe In Signs
Fellowship of Christian Athletes[/tab] [/su_tabs]