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September 16, 2017

Dear Lee Graham Parents and Swimmers,

Wow.

Someone pointed out my letter from 2009 as I was ready to hang up my cameras and pick up a watch. Obviously, I didn't stop taking photos, and I have enjoyed taking the photos and watching the races since then. Now that my time taking Lee Graham photos is winding down, I decided to revisit the subject.

I know that some people still complain that I have access to the team area or deck during meets. I know that some people still think that I should give prints to anyone who asks. I know that some people still complain that the "slideshow" is mostly my photos.

I am sorry that you feel that way. If you don't feel that way you can skip to the bottom.

As I wrote back in 2009, I do get better pictures on Saturday mornings at Lee Graham with the sun at my back, and being in the team area does allow me to capture some photos showing the joy our swimmers feel after a good race when they can get a hug or high five from Coach Mike. I try not to take advantage of being there, and I do try to ensure that I am getting pictures of everyone, and that I am not just there to get a better view of Elena's races.

Yes, I will sell you copies of the photos if you want some, or build you a collage of your swimmer's time at Lee Graham. That is how I pay for the ink and paper, and other costs of making prints, but I honestly don't expect to sell many or sometimes any photos besides the Team photos or the portraits I take on Picture Day. I am quite happy with sharing the photos through my website, since these days everyone seems to want electronic copies instead of prints anyway.

Hopefully, next season as I start to step away and others step in to fill some of those other duties, some of the rest of you Lee Graham parents will contribute more photos for the slideshow and end of year program. If I'm not putting together the program or helping Coach Mike with the slideshow, then some of you dear readers will need to fill those voids. I will admit that it has been easy to use my photos throughout the program, but I will let you know that I shoot some photos just for those purposes.

Next season when Elena exhausts her last year of NVSL eligibility, I will be through with spending my Saturday mornings, Monday evenings and scattered other days with my cameras trying to capture all those wonderful images. Taking the photos has, mostly, been lots of fun (sorting through several hundred photos per meet not quite as much), and I hope that you have enjoyed being able to look at the photos to refresh your memories of meets in the rain, belly flop contests and how our once little swimmers now look so grown up heading out for progressive dinner. I will leave the Lee Graham galleries up on my website for as long as I can, so those days will never fade.

I have given you my thoughts. Please let me know what you think pro or con.

Thank You,

Cathy Summers