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Florida Tennis Briefs(3): 7 Volusia County YMCAs Receive 10-under Grant, More

May 4, 2011 12:33 PM
Volusia County YMCAs Receive 10 and Under Tennis Grant from USTA Florida
 
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The Y, a long-time provider of much-needed traditional sport programs such as basketball, soccer and aquatics, has partnered with USTA Florida to bring tennis to under-served families at seven Y facilities in the Volusia County, Florida area. The Y was awarded a grant of $8,500 which will allow youth, ages 10 and under, to be introduced to tennis in after-school and weekend programs.
 
"We are so excited to partner with the Volusia Flagler Family YMCA by providing a 'Share the Love' grant to bring tennis to their great menu of programs," said USTA Florida Executive Director Doug Booth. "This grant will provide age-appropriate equipment that helps make tennis easier to learn so participants can play the lifetime sport of tennis."
 
The USTA Florida 'Share the Love' campaign is a $500,000 initiative on top of the organization's regular annual giving to help fund tennis programs and projects throughout Florida communities during challenging economic times. USTA Florida is a not-for-profit tennis association that returns 90% of its annual budget to directly support tennis programs in communities throughout Florida. For more information go to www.ustaflorida.com.
 
"The Y is excited about the newly formed partnership with the USTA," said Teresa Rogers, CEO and president of the Volusia Flagler Family YMCA. "The Y's priorities are healthy living, youth development and social responsibility. This grant from USTA covers all those bases. Tennis is a life-long sport and the Y is pleased to be able offer this program with the support of the USTA."
 
The USTA and First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move!" campaign have teamed up to encourage young people across the country to get active, try tennis and lead healthy lifestyles through getting children involved in 10 and Under Tennis. USTA 10 and Under Tennis featuring the QuickStart play format is designed for children utilizing smaller court sizes, racquet sizes, low-compression balls, a simple scoring system, and net heights adjusted to ease kids into the sport.

Similar mini-tennis formats have long been popular in Europe, where stars such as Roger Federer, Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters first learned the game with age-adjusted racquets, balls and court sizes. To see a video of 10 and Under Tennis in action go to: http://10andundertennis.usta.com.
 
 
Destin Resort Touts Fun and Frolic During USTA 10-U, 8-U Leagues
 
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Back row left to right: Jessica D’Aleo, Renee Broxson, Marilyn Pitman, Myke Loomis, Joe D’Aleo, Phil Landauer
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Myke Loomis with the balloon toss
 
A fun atmosphere featuring music, dancing and singing in between points was one of the highlights during the local USTA Jr. Team Tennis QuickStart League (for 8-under and 10-under children) held on May 1, 2011, at the Hidden Dunes Resort in Destin, Fla.
 
“It was a great sunny day here in the Panhandle,” said Joe D’Aleo, USPTA District 1 president of the Panhandle Division. “What is great about this format is that we make it so much fun and we encourage the parents to stay and not just drop off their children. They can see for themselves how much fun they are having --  and the best part, improving.” 
 
Director of Tennis at Hidden Dunes Myke Loomis had children singing and dancing during matches, with a number of volunteers assisting children with scoring and keeping matches running smoothly. Local Jr. Team Tennis Coordinator Jessica D’Aleo provided ice cream and popcorn, with all the children enjoying the tennis after-party.
 
“This is what playing tennis is all about, the rewards at the end,” D’Aleo said. “Also to all the kids surprise was a water balloon fight with Myke Loomis, who made a ton of water balloons for the kids to hit volleys as she tossed them. On the hot spring day the kids loved getting wet and trying to hit Myke as well. All these little extras is what makes this such a great program for everyone to enjoy, and coming up with ideas like these gives all tennis professionals initiative to become creative in making a fun environment that will have lasting memories.”
 
Also assisting the event were Loomis’ staff, Head Tennis Professional Renee Broxson, Staff Professional Phil Landauer, and volunteer Marilyn Pitman. 
 
Florida Players contribute to World Junior, Jr. Davis Cup Victories
 
The U.S. Junior Fed Cup (16-under) team and both the boys' and girls' World Junior Tennis teams (14-under) won the North/Central America & Caribbean Regional Championships this past weekend to qualify for the 2011 World Finals. The Regional Championships were held in Merida, Mexico, and U.S. teams featured three Florida players from Miami Beach, Pembroke Pines and Lighthouse Point. 

All three U.S. teams went undefeated en route win their qualifying pools, while the U.S. Junior Davis Cup team finished as the runner-up to regional winner Canada. 
 
Justin Butsch (Miami Beach, Fla.) featured on the U.S. Junior Davis Cup team, losing his only singles match and compiled a 1-1 doubles record. Stefan Kozlov (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) led the U.S. World Junior boys’ team, with 2011 Les Petits As champion Henrik Wiershlom (Kirkland, Wash.) combining to win all three matches at No. 1 singles and partnered to sweep all three doubles matches. Julia O'Loughlin (Lighthouse Point, Fla.) led th U.S. World Junior Tennis girls’ team, posting a 4-1 overall record (2-1 in singles). 
 
The World Junior Tennis Finals will be held Aug. 1-6, 2011, in Prostejov, Czech Republic. The Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup World Finals will be held starting Sept. 27, 2011, in San Luis Potosi, Mexico. Mexico automatically qualifies for the Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup World Finals as the host country, leaving just the winners (U.S., Canada) from the Regional Championships as the other teams to qualify. 
 
Former U.S. junior international team members include Jim Courier, Michael Chang, Andy Roddick, James Blake, Lindsay Davenport, Jennifer Capriati, Mardy Fish, Robby Ginepri, Jamea Jackson, Ashley Harkleroad, and Lisa Raymond.
 
 
 
 
 

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