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Members Gather for Member Appreciation Day at Delray ITC

February 7, 2007 11:58 AM

After a week of exciting tennis and unpredictable weather, the Delray Beach International Tennis Championships wrapped up Monday, Feb. 5.

World No. 29 Xavier Malisse fought back from a set down to beat world No. 6 James Blake 5-7, 6-4, 6-4 and win his second Delray Beach singles title and his 200th career match.  Thirty minutes later, Malisse went out and won the doubles title with Hugo Armando to become the first ATP player since 1996 to win the singles and doubles titles in two tournaments.

Amidst plenty of tennis, organization booths and scheduled events, USTA Florida was able to gain 141 new tennis memberships over the week. 

USTA Florida staff members Sherry Beckman, Trina Singian, Tori Townsend and Northwood University intern and tennis player Jonathan Evans drew people to the USTA booth by giving away great gifts for all members.  Players who signed up for a new membership, or extended their current membership received a choice of USTA hat, t-shirt, towel, cooler or polo fleece vest complimentary with their membership selection!

USTA Florida held Membership Appreciation Day on Wednesday, Jan. 31 to recognize members’ dedication and passion for USTA tennis.  More than 180 members and their guests joined in the festivities.  Free refreshments and gifts were included and top ranked players Florian Mayer (GER), Scott Lipsky (USA) and Chris Drake (USA) stopped by to sign autographs.

USTA Florida past president Don Cleveland helped raffle vests, t-shirts and miscellaneous gear for all the attendees.

Set up on all tables in the tent were pieces of paper asking members to list a favorite memory of playing USTA tennis. 

Below is a short list of their responses:

• Playing in the USTA stadium for the National Qualifiers at the US Open, mixed doubles.  LaGuardia  jets were not re-routed yet…which meant very loud planes over the tennis courts!
• Winning 3.5 singles at Sectionals 26 years ago.
• My first 3.5 men’s double team playing out of Boca Point.
• When I won my first tournament.  I was in the 12’s.
• The opposing team kept score by scratching the new court with a soda can.
• Winning a doubles tournament in Palm Springs the first time I played!
• Playing with Tracy Austin in 2004.

Perhaps the surprise of the evening came when Delray Beach ITC executive director John Butler interrupted the party with a special going away cake for our very own Sherry Beckman.  Sherry is retiring from USTA Florida after ten years of exceptional involvement with this organization.   Sherry will be missed by the USTA family and all individuals who’ve had the gracious pleasure of working beside her.

Thanks to all USTA members and Delray Beach staff for making the ITC Championships an enjoyable week-long event!












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