The 1st Annual Natalia Cross Country Invitational takes place Saturday, August 29 beginning with the Varsity Girls Division at 7:30am. Varsity boys follow at 8:00am, JV girls at 10:00am, and JV boys at 10:30am round out the schedule for the day.
Due to COVID restrictions, only eight total teams are permitted to participate at any given meet. Teams participating in Natalia include Pleasanton, Jourdanton, Hondo, Devine, Crystal City, Natalia, Davenport, and Poteet.
This is the first meet of the season for most teams. Several rules have changed not only for coaches and runners, but also for those individual fans that used to like to go out and run crazy all over the place (which is FUN to watch in itself).
Spectator rules have changed as well. According to Head Coach Kim Lane, each school will have submitted a roster with two spectators per athlete. When a family member enters the stadium, they MUST be on the approved roster list. They will receive a bracelet to wear at all times.
They may not walk the course. They must also remain in the stadium where the finish line is located and they may not enter ANY area where the runners are.
All athletes and family members must consent that they will prescreen before entering the premises. Fans must remain in the stadium, which is not as bad as it seems. The finish line is inside Mustang Stadium.
Runners are not allowed on or around the course following their race. In the old days, previous race runners were allowed to spread out to cheer for their fellow teammates. Now and for the foreseeable future, they must return to the bus, or leave the facility after being signed out by a parent or guardian.
Patience is a virtue
Please have patience and compassion for the meet workers as they will be/are doing everything within their power to help Cross Country meets be a possibility in the first place. None are there to irk, irritate, or provoke anyone; they are there to help. Please follow all guidelines to ensure the meet is a great and successful experience for all involved.
By Jerel Beaty