We are writing with what we feel is very exciting news. We are about to announce to the public that we are merging with 4Leaf Lacrosse New England. We want all of you to know ahead of time since your support has been so important to us over the past 5 years. From the beginning, it has always been our intent to operate as an independent company at some point, and that time is now. Atlantic Sportswear who runs the LaxPros store, has been our partner and has supported us in many ways as we have grown. We all agreed that the LaxPros club has reached a point where we can move forward as an independent entity which includes changing our name. We have been working all spring and summer behind the scenes to decide how best to proceed. We have reached out to other programs both in and out of state. Every discussion focused on doing what is best for our families and players. This has been a very deliberate process, and we are very pleased with our decision to merge with 4Leaf Lacrosse New England.
Although our name and affiliation are changing, our commitment to our players remains our central focus. When we founded this enterprise, our first priority was to create programs that cultivated Maine lacrosse talent and challenged our players to get better. In our negotiations with 4Leaf, we have maintained our commitment to Maine players and Maine lacrosse. Joe Hezlep, Dave Barton, Ben Raymond, and Bob Johnson will continue to run the Maine arm of 4Leaf Lacrosse New England. Our leagues and travel programs will change in name only. Aside from the new uniforms or reversibles, players can expect the same league play and strong travel system.
We have also been committed to respectful behavior by our players, coaches, and anyone else who is affiliated with our organization. We believe that the development of our players is important both on and off the field. Our goal is to help develop young men who are energetic, hard working, and ethically responsible. 4Leaf Lacrosse New England shares our commitment in this regard, which was another important element of our merger with them.
Most importantly, the benefits of joining 4Leaf Lacrosse include expanded opportunities for our players. 4Leaf has cultivated strong regional and national relationships and now has access to tournaments that are closed off to many smaller organizations. By being a part of 4Leaf, our players can now be eligible to participate on some of the collaborative teams that 4Leaf puts together. We truly appreciate the support all of you have given us these past 5 years at LaxPros, and we look forward to this new chapter in our story with all of you, as we join 4Leaf Lacrosse New England.
What changes besides the name? Nothing will change. We will have the same coaching staff and we will continue to run the same programs. Our league will continue as well as our travel program. As this merger grows, we will be adding to what we offer which we see as a big positive. We will retain control of the programs we run here in Maine. Uniforms and logos will change, but the product will not.
So why merge with 4Leaf Lacrosse New England? First and foremost, this organization has the same core values that we have. Second, by joining with 4Leaf we will have access to more opportunities and resources for our players. For instance, 4Leaf has gained access to national level tournaments such as the National Lacrosse Federation and NXT tournaments. Some of our coaches and top players will be able to participate on the teams going to those events because of the merger. In terms of skill development, 4Leaf has a strong system which we will add this fall using their curriculum which is very much in line with our instructional system. Because of this shared programming, both groups will be able to augment each other’s rosters at tournaments.
How will joining 4Leaf benefit players? Clearly, there are more opportunities for our players. Players will be limited only by the amount of effort they put into the sport. At the same, players will stay right here in Maine and play for the same coaches and teams. If a player wants more, we now have the ability to help him move beyond where we could take him before the merger. Three weeks ago two of our defensemen played at the NLF tournament for 4Leaf, and they fit right in and did very well. Maine players will now be able to tap into the 4Leaf resources like this moving forward.
Where will we practice? Practices will continue to be held at various locations in and around Portland. We will continue to use the Portland Sports Complex as our home base indoors, and outdoor spaces will be similar to what we have used in the past. There will be some added flexibility, especially for players from far southern Maine. For instance, if you sign up for a skills package and one of the practice sites in New Hampshire is closer and more convenient, you can go to sessions there. Of course, you will still want to practice with your travel team when and where they practice here in Maine.
Will we continue to go to the same tournaments? One of the reasons that we began talks with 4Leaf is that we already attend several of the same tournaments. We will still go to many of the same tournaments, but we will also work to align with the 4Leaf schedule. We always look at the travel schedule and make some changes from year to year anyway, and we don’t anticipate any significant changes moving forward.
What about the cost to play? Another reason we entered into discussions with 4Leaf was to find a group that is not charging very high fees to play for them. In addition, we have negotiated independence when it comes to pricing our programming. We have found that we have similar pricing structures, which is very important to us and you. The cost of the league will remain the same, and we just released our pricing for fall travel which is lower than others in the state. We will continue to offer our programs at a price that is reasonable for all of you and for us as a business.
How will I register for 4Leaf North programs? We will use the 4Leaf registration software which is Sportsengine. If you don’t have an account with Sportsengine already, you will have to create an account and then login. Once you are signed in you will go to the register page and pick the program you are looking for in one of the two age categories, Youth or High School. Programs that we offer in Maine will be labeled 4Leaf Lacrosse Maine for clarity. If you have any questions you will just contact me or one of the other 4Leaf Maine directors, and we can help you. This registration system is significantly more robust and easier for all of you to use and it helps us as well which makes for smoother, less complicated registration.
Do I still need to be a member of USLacrosse? Yes, and Sportsengine will not let you proceed without a valid membership during the registration process. This gives all of us insurance which is important to everyone.
During this transistion, please direct all inquiries to email@example.com