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USTA Tallahassee Tennis Challenger Highlighted with Special Olympics Tennis Clinic

April 26, 2005 04:03 PM
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The USTA Tallahassee Tennis Challenger, a pro circuit, event was held in Tallahassee, April  4-9.  One feature of the week was a Special Olympics Tennis clinic for 228 kids from 11 Leon County schools!  Early this year, the USTA gave a $2,000 grant to assist the greater Tallahassee community with these programs.

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Participants played carnival games such as tennis bowling, relay races, bump ups and downs, king of the court, and target practice.  There was an obstacle course too!  The children worked on their serves and ball handling skills while enjoying the Florida sunshine and making friends along the way.

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The event was a success, thanks to more than 50 volunteers, including tournament volunteers, schoolteachers and ball kids.  Tournament participant Jan-Michael Gambill helped all day at the event; the children appreciated his tennis ability and guidance.  Another tournament participant, Justin Gimelstob, signed his brand new shoes and gave them to one of the children.

After the event, pizza and cookies were served as the children watched the pros practice.  WCTV covered the event and interviewed three of the tournament participants, including Gambill.  Tallahassee Community Coordinator Kelly Tucker said it was the biggest kid’s event yet this year.

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“Today’s event with the kids was unbelievable!” Tucker said.  “I adore this program because the children always appreciate what you do for them.  It is so much fun!”

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