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Nick at Night: WisSports.net founder Nicholas Kartos pens farewell column

08/31/2015, 7:00pm CDT
By Nicholas Kartos, WSN Founder

From our first office, circa 2003

“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” – Roman philosopher Seneca (and 90s one-hit wonder Semisonic)

With that I am very excited to announce that I am starting an athletic facility software company called GymDandy. More on that in a moment.

However, that also means that I am very sad to say that I will no longer be involved in the day-to-day operations here at WSN or Sport Ngin. I will be filling the role of Editor Emeritus for the site, essentially providing feedback when asked and hopefully getting to pen an article here and there when the mood strikes me.

I could not be prouder of what we were able to accomplish in my thirteen seasons with WSN and that I am excited to see where it goes from here in the capable hands of Travis, Norbert and Mark.

I used to scoff when people would say that “things happen for a reason.”

But if you take a look at how WisSports.net came to be, I don’t know if there is a better explanation.

The Readers Digest version is that a bunch of things happened to keep me in Madison after college. After which I struggled to find a job in my desired field of web development, with the most common feedback being my lack of a solid portfolio.

In the spring of 2002 I worked every second I could find to develop, add content to and launch WisHoops.net by the start of the basketball season in November. It was supposed to be my path to a job, but it ended up being my job.

It will be a time in my life I’ll never forget. I not only got to create the go to place for high school sports in the state but I’ve done things I would have never imagined, and still can’t believe. I’ve had articles read by thousands of people. I’ve been on television and radio, in newspapers and even published printed works.

Along the way I hooked up with the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association, an organization that has become such a big part of my life and will be in the future as I continue on in the role of their Communications Director.

I was able to meet so many great people be they coaches, parents, fans or players and those relationships I truly cherish.

So with that all I can say is THANK YOU. Thank you for the support, thanks for liking what we’re doing and turning it into what it has become.

So what the heck is GymDandy and why in the world am I leaving such a wonderful thing to do the career equivalent of jumping off a cliff with half a parachute?

In my fourteen years in the world of youth and high school sports, a common pain point always came up – reserving athletic spaces. This problem was made more complex recently with the WIAA approval of unlimited contact but with the need to “rent” facilities through an outside organization.

GymDandy has the goal of solving these issues without thousands of dollars in software. Our goal is to make athletic space reservation easy and inexpensive. We will start with a focus on external reservations but will eventually grow it to a full fledged scheduling product that any school district or municipality can use to manage all their athletic spaces and user groups.

We have yet to launch but you can go to http://go.gymdandy.io to sign-up for updates.

Lastly, if you have any interest in being a beta facility user, had any questions about the business, are an investor or if you ever had the dream of getting paid next-to-nothing to work on a start-up please contact me directly – nick@gymdandy.io

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