By Derrick Smith
With kids beginning to play sports at young ages nowadays, if parents are not careful sports can consume their kid’s life. Though playing sports has its physical and mental benefits for kids, parents like Stephanie Austin know that you have to remind kids that they have someone in their corner no matter what the outcome.
“There is so much pressure on student-athletes these days from such a young age,” she said. “They are not always mentally prepared to handle such pressure and it’s important to our family that our kids have a reminder that they are loved and supported on the best and worst of days on the course.”
Stephanie is a class of 2000 graduate from Newkirk High School where she played varsity basketball all four years. She and her husband, Ryan, have two sons. Hunter is a sophomore at Ponca City High School where he plays the three bag on the varsity golf team. Blake is in the eighth grade at East Middle School and plays the one bag on the golf team.
As a parent, Stephanie feels that it is important to be there for her kids at all the events she can.
“I stay involved in the boys’ golf by making myself available for every tournament,” she said. “It could be through the school or a junior golf tour around the state. It is important to be present and support our children in all they do. My husband and I are also part of the Ponca City Golf Booster Club.”
Austin says that she enjoys being a part of the Ponca City community and that she also likes that the school makes families feel welcome to be a part of their kids’ lives.
“I love that the school encourages parent participation, support and involvement in all the kids do.”