To the editor:
I want to start this letter on a positive note so that if I seem nasty as this goes on that you see the important part. I want to sincerely thank Moffat County, the Commissioners, grant writers and all those who supported the efforts of this grant for the new soccer field.
I was at the meeting that Mr. Vandelinder was absent from. The passion for the sport we call soccer filled that room and the desire to see this effort come to pass remains strong. I want to thank Isidro Quezada for starting the ball rolling, Trapper Mine and Ray Dubois for stepping up with all their generosity and all those who were there that night in person to see this happen. See Mr. Vandelinder, you are entitled to your opinion, and I am not sure my opinion will be heard like yours because you work for the paper, but you need to know how many people you affected with your negative comments.
It's obvious you aren't a soccer fan, you don't have the ability of well-respected reporters of being unbiased, and that you obviously have a passion for swimming. See, everyone has a favorite sport, but what right did you have slamming the sport we are passionate about? I understand the need for a rec center, but at what point did anyone say that the city couldn't find a grant that would put that into action? Moffat County Commissioners took the leap and with a little perseverance it paid off.
The sad thing is that as a reporter, your biased opinion that belongs to you has been put to press for all to see. Do you know any of the kids involved in this sport personally? I do, and they love this sport. See, these kids know they are fighting the odds that this sport is still fairly new in the USA. It's not the mainstream, especially in a town where football is prevalent and 4H is a family tradition. Regardless, these kids still play with heart. For many, this is their national pastime that you just discredited.
There are not as many fields as you stated in your article. East is for the students at east and the ones on First Street are privately owned, but if you asked Soccer Bill he would be happy to accommodate because he has a passion for the game. You observed the fields empty, and I have to point out that during your business hours we are working, too. Come by in the evenings and weekends, come watch a men's league game on Sundays. All of these kids give back to this community with clean-up projects and even helped with VFW senior dinners. They don't deserve your opinion.
Craig needs a rec center; I am not denying that, but don't single out one group of people insinuating they are less deserving after the efforts put forth. Don't have the community believe this is a waste of time. Your comments about the high school teams are unjust and rude. I can go on forever about how biased and blatantly vicious your article was, but instead I invite you to come watch a game. Any one of them from Parks and Rec to competitive traveling teams. We promise you won't sit in that lawn chair too long before the game sucks you into the action and makes you a part of it.
I pray that your article did little damage with all its fiction and that this letter is published in its entirety.
Please recognize all of the soccer clubs for their perseverance: Moffat County High School boys and girls soccer teams, the City Parks Department, Yampa Valley Soccer Club, El Mexico and Craig Youth Soccer.
Don't let another man's opinion keep you from voicing yours.