October 2018

Upcoming Events:

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Coaches Corner:

Greetings from the pool deck,

It’s October. The first meets of the short course season have begun with two simultaneous meets happening the first weekend. That means we’ll have well over 100 MARSians scattered around the Metroplex. Fall is a busy time of the swimming year. High school meets have already begun too. Nearly every weekend we’ll be on the pool deck somewhere. Are you ready for it?

Our first hosted meet this fall is at Grapevine on November 9-11, with our BB & Under Division 1 meet. The format will be similar to what done recently. We’ll need lots of help to make this another great MARSian event. When the jobs get posted, please take the opportunity to sign up. Don’t be shy. Many jobs fill up quickly. Any food and drink we may need will be put up at a later time, closer to the meet dates. In December, we’re doing the same format again. We’ll need help then too. Bring the family and make it a family event. Everyone’s hours count.

Coaches Suzanne, Shannon and I, and our Athlete Representative, Jibran H, just came back from the USAS Convention in Jacksonville, FL. This annual event is where coaches, officials, administrators, and other important folks get together to decide what’s important in USAS. One of the more animated discussions surrounded the new rule regarding technical suits worn by 12 & Under athletes. After much hoopla, the House of Delegates passed legislation to ban the use of technical suits on all 12 & Under athletes beginning Sept 2020, for all meets below the Junior National level. This is a good decision, although controversial. Nearly all coaches, including your MARSian staff, believe that 12 & Under swimmers need to be worrying about getting technically better, not about buying the right technical suit. A detailed list of approved suits will be coming out over the next 2 years. Manufacturers will likely start designing something that will comply with the new rules, but still have some whistles and bells to it. Our team suit works just fine and will always be legal for any swim meet. By the way, for those who haven’t looked at technical suits yet, they cost $180-$450, and last only a few races.

We continue to need more officials on our team. We made a good start, over the last several months, with several parents going to the clinics and starting the process. I encourage more parents to start down this road. It’s a very rewarding and respected position within USA Swimming. We will be announcing more entry-level (Stroke & Turn) clinics in the coming months. Please consider checking it out. I bring this up again because it has been increasingly difficult to put together an officiating crew for the meets we want to host. For the two meets I mentioned earlier, in November and December, I am going to other teams for help. As I write this Coaches Corner , we still have not found an Admin Referee. We need to be more self-sufficient with our officiating crew. We need to have not only more new Stroke & Turn officials, but we need to get some our more experienced officials into Starter, Admin Referee, Deck Referee, and Meet Referee roles as soon as possible. This is really important to ensure MARS remains a leader in NT and USA Swimming.

I’m looking forward too seeing many of you at our annual Trunk-r-Treat on October 30th at Grapevine.

Coach Brian

***Attention all MARS families…

All current MARS families MUST Re-Register online with MARS for 2019 – As well as, must choose renewing family - NOT swimmers GROUP.

This is in addition to your USA 2019 registration.

***All renewing families this year have to also complete a paper copy of polices and procedures since it has changed. copy of this can either be found on the parents page or from there coach.

Thank you!

Parents Corner:

Reminder to all MARSian families.....If you haven't already done so, please renew your USAS membership this month.All renewals are due by Nov 1st. Please note: If you joined the team after August 1st, 2018 you are already registered for 2019 and do not need to renew. If you joined the team prior to August 1, 2018 you need to renew. Registration is on a calendar year, not 12 months from the day you joined the team.

REALLY IMPORTANT NOTE!! To renew your membership, log into your account online and click Start Registration. SELECT RENEWING MEMBER, NOT THE GROUP YOUR CHILD ACTUALLY SWIMS IN. If you click the group your child swims in you will be charged the new member registration rate and tuition for the month (you don't want that). By clicking RENEWING MEMBER you are only charged the reduced renewal rate and no extra tuition payment. Each swimmer also needs to fill out a 2019 USAS membership application. USAS still uses the paper form for 2019. These are available at each pool and on our website under the Parents Page tab. Please turn these in to your pools' supervisor or MARS Super-Parent helping with registration at the pools. If you have any questions please contact Lauren ( or 817-271-1537).

Please remember that we must have everyone's renewal by November 1st. The NT Registrar has told us those renewal applications received after that date will not be processed until after January 1st. This means swimmers not registered for 2018 will not be allowed to swim after January 1st, until their renewal gets processed by USAS. This could take a few weeks into January.

Why do you have to register by Nov 1st? Because USAS has more than 400,000 members, North Texas has more than 6600, and MARS more than 500. All need to get processed before Jan 1st. With the holidays in there, the number of working days are reduced.

Ask MARSian Parent

Q: Do I have to have 18 service hours if we joined MARS during the Summer?


New family service hours from Summer through December

· Hours for June & July – 12 hours

· Hours for August & September – 8 hours

· Hours for October & November – 6 hours

· November & December – 2 hours

Q: My son is a novice swimmer and I am a novice swim parent. We are going to our first swim meet. How do we get ready for our first swim meet?

A: We have a wonderful document created by the original Super Parent Rebecca Dark.

Your First Swim Meet Guide.

Q: If I don't plan to swim with MARS in 2018/2019 what should I do?

A: You should email Coach Lauren at or Office Manager at with your swimmers 30 day notice.

Q: How can I see how many service hours I owe?

A: Login to the Mars Team Web Site.

Select My Account on the right.

Select $My Invoice/Payments.

Select the Service Hours tab.

If your number shows a positive value, then that is what you owe.

Q: Why do we have to volunteer at our meets?

A: In order for us to host a successful and safe meet, we need our MARSian families to be part of every meet we host. We all lead very busy lives. However, I can promise you that your swimmer will feel even more supported seeing you as a timer, head timer, meet runner and/or working concessions or hospitality room. Everyone is good at something which means everyone has something to offer. Please be on the lookout for upcoming dates for training classes for each of our volunteer positions. ***Each person will receive volunteer points for attending the training class. ***Please Note: You will receive the points once you put that training into action at our hosted meets. In addition to the points you will receive for your volunteer work at the meet.

Q: Do the service hours start over in January?

A: Yes, service hours are per calendar year (January 1st through December 31st).

Q: How many service hours will we owe for 2019?

A: We will each owe 18 service hours for 2019 per family that have swimmers in Bronze and above groups.

Q: What is OnDeck Parent application and why do I need it?

A: OnDeck Parent is an IPhone or Android application which allows you as a swim parent to manage your MAR's account and follow your swimmer's accomplishments. See these web sites for more information about the application and download instructions. iPhone or Android

Once you download and install the application on your device you can login by filling in the following entries:

Username - Is your email address that you used to login to the MAR's (TeamUnify) web site.

Password - Is your password used to login to the MAR's (TeamUnify) web site.

Team alias - ntsmars

Q: How do I set up the SMS messaging?

A: How to set up and receive SMS from your coach's about pool updates or quick important info.

1- log-in to your account

2- Click on My Account then under the drop down click on My account again

3- Add up to two SMS number and the Carrier and click save

4- Then go to click on Not Verified and you will receive a code via text message that then you type in and hit verify.

5- Set to start getting text from the team when a pool is closed or we need to get you fast information.

Do you have a question for the MARSian parent? Email at

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Celebrating October Birthdays

Ashwini Vivek, Mason Cashatt, Grant Tinker, Matthew Troy, Alexis Haley, Rachel Villalba, Alexander Graves, Mia Jax, Helena Smith, Jamie Lucas, Jayden Renteria, Mitchell Hulme, Trisha Thakar, Olivia Rajian, Sarah Adejokun, Emma Huckabee, Tyler Thompson, Nicole Fabrassen, Summer Cervantes, Dean Frohm, Alice Dalebroux, Vinh Bui, Jaxen Utterback, Victor Bravo, Dominic Moretta, Brooke Wallace, Casey Mitchell, Veronica Romero, Ella Dietzman, Isabelle Jackson, George Burdick, Mila Hughes-Shalom