It’s days like these in mid-August that Nelda Ayala’s job is most hectic.
Volleyball season has started and Alice High School’s first home game is Wednesday. The cross country team is practicing and their first meet is quickly nearing.
And, the Coyotes’ first football game of the season is just two weeks away, and in a day or so, Ayala’s mornings and afternoons will be filled with football season ticket holders hurrying to buy their tickets.
No, Ayala isn’t complaining. Rather, Alice High School’s athletic department secretary beams with pride when she talks about all she does and the coaches and athletes and people she works with and all of the others she gets to meet through work.
“I love it,” she says with a big smile. “I love my job. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Ayala, an Alice High School alum, has worked in schools for 33 years, including the last 23 in Alice. She worked as the school principal’s secretary and then the counselors' secretary. She even spent a few months in Alice High School’s copy room before moving into her current role at the athletic department.
Now starting her fifth year in the athletic department, her role has grown to that of a one-woman support staff. Aside from secretarial duties, she also handles everything from invoices and bookkeeping to handling concession stand sales at home volleyball and basketball games and preparing money boxes for home games in other events.
She handles it all with the same genuine smile and outgoing helpful personality, mostly because of her fondness for her role.
“I’m from Alice and I’ve live here all my life,” she said. “I went to school here and I’ve worked here for a long time. I just like working here. Even now, sometimes I’ll have to walk to the office and I’ll be walking down the hall and hear the band practicing the school song and it gives me goose bumps.”
However, by far, to the general public, Ayala’s known as the person in charge of Coyote season tickets.
“Football season is very exciting, and people get really anxious about their season tickets,” she said.
Current season ticket holders may purchase their tickets for the upcoming season from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. Thursday at the Alice Coyote ticket office in the athletic department. Ticket holders can also purchase their ticket from 8 a.m. to noon Friday.
Ticket sales will also be from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. on Aug. 15-18. The ticket office will be closed on Friday, Aug. 19 to prepare for open ticket sales on Saturday, Aug. 20. Any seats not purchased by 4 p.m. on Aug. 18 will be sold to the general public on a first come, first serve basis beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 20.