THE SIDE UPDATE: May 23, 2019 @ 8:00 PM
TULSA'S WEST BANK & SAND SPRINGS'S RIVERCITY REPORT
RIVERCITY, WEST BANK, FT GIBSON (ARSENAL) CLOSED INDEFINITELY
CLAREMORE - UPDATE FORTHCOMING
First and foremost - THANK YOU! Every volunteer, every player, parent, coach, director, friend - THANK YOU. The Side is so wonderful because of the amazing PEOPLE!
Second and as importantly, our focus, our perspective the next several days, weeks, possibly months, will be PEOPLE. Your safety, your well being, your peace of mind will be our priority as a family.
On Tuesday at approximately 11:45 AM we were given two hours to evacuate RiverCity Parks by 2:00 p.m. With over 50 people from The Side responding within 30 minutes, we succesfully evacuated and/or moved most valuable assets to safety, and by 3 PM we had cleared the park.
On Wednesday morning at approximately 8 AM we were informed that our safey area, the new concession building at RiverCity could potentially take on water. By 10 AM a full crew had assembled to follow up the second evacuation of RiverCity to futher secure and remove valuables. At approximatley 1 PM we were informed West Bank may take on water and we began a mild evacuation process at West Bank. At this time all of our goals appear safe in all photos and video footage at RiverCity. However, we expect much higher water levels by Monday which is the minimum amount of time we expect the increased flow rates to come from Keystone Dam.
Wednesday evening at West Bank we could see the water had risen and currents were rapidly increasing and we decided to close the facility. We evaluated and assessed the facility and generated some minor action plans, and made minor revisions to assets for protection, with the understanding that West Bank is mostly protected by most flood map projections.
Thursday morning, in the wake of the storms Tuesday night we evaluated West Bank (see cover photo) and saw most of the Southeast quad under water (3 fields). A broken backflow valve was taking water backflow from the River. We shut off power, and rescued goals, mowers, and lightcarts to safety. We cleared the Ken Lovelee Clubhouse of some valuables, and stowed others away. The Ken Lovelee Clubhouse shows protected by all of the 100 year and 200 year flood plain maps. We left West Bank approximately 2 p.m. with the understanding that 3 pm would be an all-call evacuation for the area. The roads were most impassable to West Bank at this time.
Thursday noonish, we began to get reports from each of our numerous campuses around Oklahoma. Ft Gibson is under water. OKC fields appear good. Skiatook facility is under water but fields should be good. SouthPark in east Tulsa is in good shape. Wright Park in East Tulsa and T Town are in good shape. Claremore at WSA North is completely under water. As we get final evaluations of these facilities we planned to generate action plans, however, the day was not ready to become an office day yet.
Thursday afternoon, we were informed at 2:30 PM there had been a breach on the west bank of the river along the West Bank Sports Facility property. With risk of sudden flooding and a surge of the force of the entire river, we did not put out an all-call and instead assembled the crew of the clans of Roberts, Combs, Weeks, Hoey and Bush's. We wanted to keep numbers small to complete a swift exit if needed. We evacuated the Ken Lovelee Clubhouse, plotted plans to plug the levee, Wes & Weeks tried to plug the backflow, as City of Tulsa and RiverParks Authority and Tulsa Police showed up on scene. We left at 7 p.m. Wednesday in hopes that the construction company, RPA and City of Tulsa will plug the levee which will save the entire neighborhood and business district just WEST of West Bank.
We are grateful for the swift action of RiverParks Authority, City of Tulsa, and Tulsa Police, in generating a plan, finding resources, and commiting to the bravery required to plug the levee during these precarious times. As I type this report they are currently working and will soon be using the light carts that many players at The Side use to train by each night so that they can work beyond sunset.
We pray for their safety and their sucess. We pray for the families who live immediately WEST of West Bank that they heed the warnings and the police announcments for "evacuate now". We know several WSA families live in these homes.
I'd like to thank Matt Weeks, his family and his crew, Jeremy Combs, Barry Roberts and his family, Wes Branstetter, Phil Hoey, Barry Roberts, his family, Chris Taylor, and Ryan Bush, who were all on site multiple times today at West Bank during dangerous times.
Please stay posted. The club directors have been literally working all of the hours doing the manual labor needed to try to save as much of our club assets as we can. We have not processed yet the future training, registration, ongoing tryouts, the operations of the club during this time.
However, we do know two things. The Side will withstand and stand together! And The Side will bebuild TOGETHER. For as we rediscover the power of Mother Nature during this event and its force to destruct, we are excited to see it's Force to Heal on the other Side.
We will be generating plans for training. We will inform teams of the plans for State Cup as well as plans for games this weekend, very soon.
RIGHT NOW - we want your focus to be on YOUR SAFETY and the SAFETY and SERVICE to and for OTHERS. We have several boys teams in the club that will be willing to help w/ evacuations or clean-up efforts, anything needed. Please use your family during this time.
Our Soccer will be Second to our Service.
God Speed to all who are currently impacted by the storms or the imminent flooding. Stay safe! Pray.
Roger & Ryan