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A Message from the President

10 Dec

Here’s a message President Steve Rizzi sent by e-mail to club members for whom he had email addresses.

I thought I would try to get a quick e-mail out (with Jayne Gibson’s assistance) to update as many of you as possible as to what has been happening with the Fast Break Club. I know there have been so many things happening. I’m sure that I will miss something, but here’s a quick update.

The Fast Break Club is a booster club that has been organized as requested by Head Basketball Coach Kris Fadness. The club’s goal is basically twofold. First, it is a hope that the club can raise funds to help support the high school basketball program in a variety of ways. Secondly, it is a goal of the club to create additional excitement about Austin Packer boys basketball.


50-50 draw. At each home game you will see a table where you can purchase tickets for 50-50 draw. Obviously half of the money goes to the club, the other half goes to the winner.

Halftime Hoop Shoot. We are continuing the tradition of a shooting contest at halftime in order to raise additional money. Through the generous donations of a number of local businesses, prizes will be awarded to successful shooters from behind the 3-point line, they having paid $1.00 a shot. Jerry Maxfield has arranged for the prizes for the hoop shoot.

3-Point Club. There has been established a 3-Point Club. This is the major fundraising arm of the booster organization. It is hoped that a large number of $100.00 contributions can be solicited. The primary focus of the monies generated by the 3-Point Club will be to address the needs of the basketball program as requested by Coach Fadness. I would hope that many of you will give strong consideration to being a part of the 3-Point Club. Mark Coffey chairs this committee.

Advertising: If you attended Tuesday night’s home game (it’s always great to win, isn’t it?), you saw on the back page a number of advertisements have been sold on the program. (You should know that the advertisement for HyVee and Sundal Instant Printing was given to them for the outstanding contributions that they have made to our organizations and Austin basketball.) Tim Duren’s group continues to work on additional fundraising ideas through advertising.

Membership: Kathy Fritz is working hard to establish a database and solicit participating members into our Fast Break Club. Membership is obtained simply by being interested in the boys basketball program and being willing to help out with our activities and/or contribute to our various fundraising activities.

Other Items: Thus far, the Fast Break Club has provided the members of the Austin High School boys basketball team with water bottles to be utilized during the games, a sack lunch on the trip to St. Louis Park, as well as videotapes for the videotaping of their games by the coaching staff. We hope to expand these measures while at the same time reserving funds to meet the long-term goals of the program as was originally requested by Coach Fadness. Ron Felten is assisting with the planning of an Ellis night to be held Saturday, January 13th. We hope to attract a number of our Ellis students to the game that night and are in the process of putting together plans to make it special for them.

Ron is also coordinating Austin Youth basketball games during the halftime of the 9th grade game and some JV contests. Signe Rizzi and Jane Justice are coordinating the game day activities (50-50 draw, hoop shoot, etc.) and were very successful in their endeavors Tuesday night at the Mankato East game. The halftime hoop shoot and 50-50 draw netted
the club in excess of $200.00, thanks in large part to the unclaimed 50-50 prize. What a great result for our first effort! Obviously noticeable were the new programs.

Future enhancements are in the works. Club secretary Jayne Gibson has been busy keeping the various committees informed of activities and responsibilities. Plans are underway for an end of the season banquet, which includes all players and their parents, 9th through 12th grade. We hope to have high school, junior high and alumni bands playing during the games. Arrangements are also being made for various students to sing the National Anthem. A student draw has been put into place where one AHS student’s name will be picked for every home game. If the student is present, the student will win a $10.00 gift card. If the student is not present, the card rolls over to the next game and becomes a $20.00 gift card. David Stout did not claim his prize Tuesday night and therefore next Tuesday against Faribault the student’s name drawn will get a $20.00 Target gift card (thank you, Paul Swan) if the student is present at the time his or her name is announced. We are hoping to generate additional student excitement at home games, which was very evident Tuesday night against Mankato East.

These are just some of the activities that our club has put into motion thus far. There are a number of other things still in process and we invite all of you to find an area of the club that you are interested in and get involved.

Thank you for supporting Austin High School boys basketball. Go Packers!

Steve Rizzi, President
Fast Break Club


Blogging 101 Session Tuesday Night

27 Nov

A training session for all who are interested in helping to maintain this blog and its “sister” blog for AHS girls basketball will be held Tuesday, November 28 at 7 p.m. at the home of Lee and Lisa Aase, 800 4th ST NW.

Please indicate whether you will be coming by email ( or by leaving a comment below.

Announcing a “Sister” Blog

26 Nov

We’ve started a blog for the Austin High School Girls, basketball team, too. You can click here to see highlights of their win Saturday vs. Hill Murray.

We’re going to have the training session for people who want to be involved in maintaining these blogs on Tuesday, November 28. Please email if you would like to be part of this.

Assembling the Blogging Team

20 Nov

Just as the Packers depend on teamwork for success, we will need a team of bloggers to keep this site up to date and to keep improving it.

If you’re reading this page, you’re qualified to be part of the blogging team. NO EXPERIENCE NEEDED!

To learn about blogging and contribute in this way to the Fast Break Club’s success, leave a comment below, or send an email to And if you haven’t yet joined the Fast Break Club, send an email to the same address.

When we have a core group of volunteers, we will schedule a meeting for training (Blogging 101) and to discuss features we can add to this site to make it most useful and interesting to the Austin basketball community.

Go Packers!

The Official Blog for Austin (MN) Boys Basketball

18 Nov

The purpose of the AHS Fast Break Club is to provide support for a stronger Austin Packers boys basketball program, by raising funds for needed equipment, encouraging fan support and turnout for games, and creating an environment that contributes to a successful program that reflects well on Austin, MN.

This blog is a gathering place to help build a community around the basketball program, so fans and friends can be updated on the latest news and events, and also learn how they can help. It exists to contribute to the success of the Fast Break Club and its various programs, including the Three Point Club, Game Day activities, and special events.

We’ll have pictures and possibly even videos of game action. It will be a way for AHS alumni to stay in touch with the team, and maybe even with each other.

Comments and other participation in the blog will be encouraged, but they will be monitored to ensure they are positive and constructive, not critical of the team, players or coaches. And while we’re at it, we’ll introduce many of you to the world of blogs, YouTube, Flickr and web feeds.

You’ll be able to sign up for automatic e-mail updates, so you’ll get a message when anything new is posted here, or you can subscribe via RSS. You also could do it the old-fashioned way (old-fashioned meaning pre-2000!) and just bookmark the home page. Whatever is new will show up at the top.

Don’t feel badly if you don’t understand some of these terms; just ask your questions in the comments, and we’ll provide answers. That way, this blog will not only provide support for Austin boys basketball – it will also contribute to the Austin school district’s goal of “Empowering All Learners for Life!

Meanwhile, you can click here to link to the Minnesota State High School League’s page on the Packers, and see the Packers’ schedule, roster (when it is finalized) and other team information. It also will be in the blogroll at right. The AHS girls’ basketball team’s MSHSL page is here.

Just to give you a flavor of the kinds of things we can include in this blog, below are some photos from last year’s Varsity, JV and B-squad teams. And here is a link to my personal blog, where I have a video sequence of my favorite volleyball player. If you click around there you also will see some of the kinds of things I hope we can do with this Fast Break Club blog.

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