The next Upward practice card will address the virtue of joy. The scripture memory verse is from Philippians 4:4, “Always be joyful because you belong to the Lord. I will say it again. Be joyful!” Our previous virtues of commitment and self-control are traits that with God's help we work to achieve; whereas, joy flows freely from God's heart to ours. It is a pleasure, a privilege, a gift.

We have a two-table bridge game on Thursdays beginning at 10:00 a.m. Currently both tables are filled, but we often need subs. If you would like to get on the sub list, please call Sue Whitkopf at 731-676-2991 or Patti Lou Parker at 285-4794.

HEROES 

Realizing that the death of Kobe Bryant had most likely impacted the young men who play basketball at the Family Life Center in the afternoons, I met them as they arrived Monday to tell them that I knew they had lost a hero. One of them replied, “We’re “hooping” for Kobe today.” Their usual noisy, hard playing was replaced with an intensity and dignity that I had never seen before.

Beginning Badminton and Pickleball will start back on Wednesday, September 12, between 3:30 and 5:00. If you are interested, please let Patti Lou Parker know by calling the Family Life Center at 285-4794 between 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday or emailing her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . That day and time are not carved in stone so please call Patti Lou if you are interested in playing but cannot on Wednesdays.

Those of you who have never had a child participate in our Upward® program probably don’t know about the team devotions that happen on practice nights. These devotions are a time for the coaches to talk with their players about Christian virtues. The Upward organization provides Coach Playbooks that provide instructions on how to coach, but also how to lead devotion time.

We now have three teams. There is one made up of staff members, one team made up of God’s Hands Class members, and one made up of regular Family Life Center walkers. That’s better than we were doing last week, but it is still a bit sparse for a church with the number of members that we have. The registration deadline is September 25 so there is still plenty of time to form more teams. So, if you don’t call Patti Lou Parker (285-4794) or email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) soon to sign up, she will start calling you. 

We look forward to a great season in 2020. The first games will be played on Thursday night, January 9, and on Saturday morning, January 11. Games will follow this Thursday night/ Saturday morning schedule through the third week of February. It is heart warming and at times hilarious to watch kids from 4 years-old to 6th grade playing basketball and leading cheers while practicing good sportsmanship and Christian values.

Upward Evaluations for FUMC members
November 1 from 5:00 - 5:45 p.m.  

Open Evaluations for Cheer and Basketball
Thursday, November 2 at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Thursday, November 9 at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Saturday, November 11 at 8:30 a.m. and 12 p.m.

As in recent years, the Family Life Center will be closed during the Christmas break from December 23 through January 3. However, it will be available for groups or individuals to reserve for special events.

As you probably know, this year at Salt and Light we are having gym time before supper instead of during. It begins at 5:00 p.m. and lasts until 5:45. We have soccer, basketball, or hockey for the 3rd - 6th grade, and free play with slides, tunnels, and bouncy balls for 3 year old - 2nd grade children. Join us next Wednesday!

UPWARD® BASKETBALL AND CHEER CHANGES IN FAMILY LIFE CENTER SCHEDULE 

With Upward starting practices in December and games and practices in January and February, there will be some changes in the Family Life Center schedule beginning the first week of December. 

There is no Preschool or afternoon basketball during the school’s Fall Break, so parents are welcome to bring their children to the Family Life Center to play. However, parents will also have to stay and supervise their children while playing.

It is time to register your children (ages K5 through 6th grade) for Upward® Basketball and Cheer. You can register by picking up a brochure from the church office or from the Family Life Center. The registration fee is $55. Also, there will be discounts for families with more than one child participating. As always, scholarships are available to help with costs. Online Registration Link

We are still looking for people interested in Badminton. If you once played tennis, but it has become a little too strenuous, then Badminton is the game for you.

Walking Track - Open M, T, TH
7:30 am–1:00 pm; 2:30 pm- 7:30 pm 

Wednesday - 7:30 am – 1:00 pm 2:30 pm - 5:00 pm 

Friday - 7:30 am - 12:00 pm

Do you ever have an idea of a group or a study or activity that you wish we had at the Family Life Center? If you do, please call Patti Lou Parker, Family Life Center Director, at 285-4794.

Our pickleball group has resumed playing on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. in the Family Life Center gym. Pickleball is a game that is played on a court similar to a tennis court. However, instead of using rackets, one uses a paddle that is larger than a ping pong paddle.

I was scrounging around in the Family Life Center equipment room when I came across this net and poles that fit into the gym floor. After examining them, I realized that they are for volleyball.

As we have for several years now, we will host the YMCA Summer Camp in our Family Life Center building. This will not impede any church activities because the YMCA will work around our schedule. If there is anything that you are planning to do at the FLC, outside of normally scheduled events, please call Patti Lou Parker as soon as possible at 285-4794

September 4 – Registration opens

September 29 – Opening Ceremony at Okeena Park from 9:00 am-10:30 am

The last week of Upward practices and games was left off the calendar insert that you received in your newsletter last week.

The corrections are: 

The signup sheet for the men’s softball team will be in the FLC taped to Patti Lou’s office window and the window of the print room in the church.

After the Christmas break, Upward® practices will resume on Monday and Tuesday nights beginning Monday, January 7. Upward® games are on Thursday nights and Saturdays beginning Thursday, January 10. During half-time, we have a short devotional presented by church members and staff for the fans. If you are interested in participating in this ministry, please contact Patti Lou Parker at 285-4794. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

We have had a relatively mild summer, but with temperatures hitting the 90’s and the humidity also reaching 90%+, walking or running outside is miserable. You don’t have to miss your daily exercise. Come to the Family Life Center and use our elevated walking track. It is actually better for your feet and whole body than concrete or asphalt because it is made of a special material that absorbs the shock of walking or running.

Upward games are on Thursday nights and Saturdays beginning Thursday, January 10.

The signup sheet for the men’s softball team will be in the FLC taped to Patti Lou’s office window and the window of the print room in the church.

Basketball players must attend ONE evaluation date: Nov. 8th, 6 pm - 9 pm. or Nov. 10th, 8:30 am - 12 pm.

Or to speed up evaluations for FUMC MEMBERS AND THEIR GUESTS there will an EARLY EVALUATION DATE on Sunday, Nov. 4th, 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm in the FLC.

The lower parking lot, by the Family Life Center, will be blocked off next Thursday and Friday, May 11th and 12th, for our annual Preschool Field Days.

It is time to register your children (ages 5 through 6 grade) for Upward Basketball and Cheer. Online registration begins this Thursday, October 11.

Walk Across Tennessee is a team-based walking program. The teams are encouraged to cumulatively walk the equivalent of the length of Tennessee (about 500 miles) or more, over an eight-week period.

Believe it or not, we will soon start making plans for the 2019 Upward® season. We always need coaches, devotional leaders, concession stand workers, etc. Anyone who wants to be contacted to participate in this great program please contact Patti Lou Parker (285-4794) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

The signup sheet for the men’s softball team will be in the FLC taped to Patti Lou’s office window and the window of the print room in the church. Sign-up is $20. The league will start at the end of June. It will be a wood bat league again with the same rules as last year.

Due to several conflicts, we will not begin Beginning Pickleball and Badminton until after Fall Break. In the meantime, please contact Patti Lou Parker (285-4794 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you are interested in participating in this program.

Church Softball
The signup sheet for the men’s softball team will be in the FLC taped to Patti Lou’s office window. The league will start at the end of June. It will be a wood bat league again with the same rules as last year.