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Florida Tennis Briefs: Morgan Named July VOM; USTA Florida 'Adopt-a-Unit' Staff Event

July 5, 2011 12:25 PM
'Forever' Volunteer Morgan Named USTA Florida July 2011 Tennis VOM

Nancy Morgan.jpgNancy Morgan has been a USTA Florida volunteer for approximately 30 years, or "Forever!" according to the resident of Dunedin in the Tampa Bay area.

"Seriously, I became involved in the early 1980s when USTA Florida introduced the schools program," Morgan said. "When I met Florida's [then-]schools person Barbara Braunstein in 1983, I became hooked and have been a volunteer in some fashion ever since."

A steadfast supporter of the area's active Suncoast Tennis Foundation (STF) since its inception, Morgan sees tennis in the schools as imperative to the future success of the sport.

"There is no doubt that schools are the best venue to reach the most children, and the [10 and Under Tennis] down-sized equipment and court sizes are the most logical approach. The STF sees and believes this and is working to achieve it."

This was the second year for Morgan leading a group of volunteer friends, parents, and teachers in a free after-school tennis club for a local elementary school. She met with the physical education department head and school principal, who were both receptive to the idea, and identified a club sponsor, a 3rd grade teacher. The STF purchased the necessary equipment in hope of planting the seeds for a continued program led by the school and its parents.

"The 10 and Under Tennis format was very successfully utilized on their multi-purpose court area for 3rd graders," Morgan said. "Both the players and leaders had fun, and some of the players have continued to play."

Morgan has also served on the USTA Florida Board of Directors, in addition to various Florida and USTA National committee positions. She is a former newspaper journalist who supports the Tampa Bay tennis community with her own online newsletter, The Tennis News at www.thetennisnews.net. Through the newsletter she promotes adult and junior tournament participation in the area, and gives readers the news on upcoming charity tournaments and other local events. She is also a regular columnist for TennisLife-Florida and Florida Tennis magazines.

USTA Florida honors Nancy Morgan as the July 2011 Volunteer of the Month for her dedication to grassroots tennis, and growing tennis in her area schools while promoting the overall game among children and adults.

ABOUT NANCY

Birthplace:
West Virginia
Family Members: husband David (just celebrated 43 years); son Charley, his wife Traci and children Kaci and Hank; daughter Christy, her husband Jamie and children Hannah, Kaelyn, Ellie, Mia, Haden and baby-to-be; daughter Andrea, her husband Billy and dogs Cloie and Duke
Favorite Movie: The King's Speech
Favorite Food: fried green tomatoes
Favorite Travel: Canaan Valley in West Virginia
Favorite Tennis Shot: one-handed slice backhand

My earliest tennis memory was..."as a teenager driving down and around a mountain 14 miles away to the nearest tennis court. Basketball was 'king' in West Virginia, and tennis courts were few and far between!"

If I could play tennis with three people, they would be..."Billie Jean King, Martina Navratilova and Stefan Edberg -- masters of the nearly-extinct serve and volley game!"

When I am not playing tennis I am..."with family, especially my dear husband David -- we spend time cheering on the Tampa Bay Rays, biking the lovely Pinellas Trail, fishing, watching sunsets and even playing a little golf. Keeping up with our family is nearly a full-time job, yet we are blessed that they are close by us. After that, I'm writing my online newsletter (www.thetennisnews.net) or articles for Tennis Life and Florida Tennis magazines and fulfilling work duties at my favorite tennis shop, Advantage Yours Tennis."

Best ever tennis memory..."Girls-only trip to Amelia Island on my 40th birthday to see the WTA tournament. It was my first time to see professional tennis up close -- watching Steffi Graf and Gabriela Sabatini was especially exciting!"

I like to volunteer in tennis because..."What better activity than promoting a healthy sport that you yourself love?! I have served in many volunteer roles, from local director to president, and through all that time (nearly 30 years), grassroots tennis for kids has always been most special to me."


85th National Public Parks Tennis Tournament Held at U. of Minnesota

national-public-parks-chps-.jpgThe 85th National Public Parks Tennis Championships will be held at the Baseline Tennis Center on the University of Minnesota campus on July 28-Aug. 7, 2011, open to all USTA members and offering a tournament for all players, regardless of age or ability. The deadline to register is July 21.

From July 28-Aug. 1 are the NTRP, age group and wheelchair divisions. For the NTRP division, there is singles, doubles and mixed doubles offered at 3.0, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5 (singles) and 6.0, 7.0, 8.0, 9.0 (doubles) levels. The age group draws range from 35-90 years of age and Open for both singles and doubles. The wheelchair has four divisions for men, and two each for women and quad.

The family events run Aug. 1-2, and feature events such as husband-wife, father-daughter, father-son, mother-daughter and mother-son doubles events. Also during these days are the adaptive events. There will be men's and women's singles and doubles, and unified doubles.

The junior tournament is Aug. 3-7. There will be boys and girls singles and doubles for 10s, 12s, 14s, 16s, and 18s. The 10s tournament is a QuickStart event and will be played on a 60-foot court with an orange ball.

The first National Public Parks Tournament was held in 1923 in St. Louis, Mo. The first tournaments were men's singles and doubles only. The first women's championships were held in 1930 in Washington, D.C. The National Junior Public Parks Championships was first started in 1948. Senior events were eventually added in 1959 (men's singles), 1961 (men's doubles), and 1964 (women's). More events were added in the 1980s and 1990s.

Tournament rates are $60 for singles and $30 per player for doubles. To register for this event go to http://tennislink.usta.com/TOURNAMENTS/TournamentHome/Tournament.aspx?T=108096.


USTA Florida Staff in Daytona to Host Military 'Adopt-a-Unit' Support Effort on July 12
 
 
Blake-Adopt-a-Unit-MediaWal
Florida's James Blake at the Adopt-a-Unit display earlier this year
at the Tallahassee Challenger
The United States Tennis Association-Florida Section (USTA Florida), headquartered in Daytona Beach, will host a "USTA Adopt-a-Unit Packing Party" on July 12, 2011, at 6 p.m. at the Florida Tennis Center, where USTA Florida staff will prepare care packages for an adopted unit in Iraq.
 
"These Adopt-a-Unit parties are being hosted by tennis communities across Florida and the U.S., and the USTA Florida staff want to take part in supporting our troops," said USTA Florida Director of Community Tennis Linda Curtis.
 
The USTA and the National Recreation Foundation are funding the new Adopt-A-Unit initiative, which provides a way for tennis communities to get involved in adopting units of deployed service members by providing recreational and psychological support, and sending much-needed care packages along with portable tennis equipment to the units.
 
"These care packages from USTA Florida will provide needed items for soldiers such as socks, toiletries, razors, candy, sunscreen, soap, toothpaste, and more," Curtis said. "The USTA national office and its charitable arm 'USTA Serves' will then send our unit portable tennis equipment for their recreational use."
 
U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Andy Marckesano, infantry squad leader of the 2nd Platoon Charlie Company 2-508th PIR in the Arghandab River Valley of Kandahar, located in southwest Afghanistan, is a past recipient of a USTA care package for his squad along with tennis equipment.
 
"My father played all the time and he liked (Andre) Agassi, so I liked him too," said Marckesano, who himself played regularly through middle school. "Tennis is very popular where my family lived, there was a court right down the street which was always packed with a lot of active people and a variety of age groups."
 
The Adopt-A-Unit goal is to provide 300 units with support from tennis communities across the US over the first 12 to 18 months of the program, impacting up to 30,000 soldiers and their families. The USTA has partnered with Wilson Sporting Goods to design a prepackaged carton of equipment (pop-up nets, racquets, balls and lines) that can be shipped directly from Wilson to the units. The portable tennis equipment can provide our soldiers with a recreational, therapeutic, and social means for reintegrating with family, friends and community upon their return home. The pop-up nets can be set up anywhere, including motor pools, asphalt surfaces and even in the desert-like conditions that many of these troops encounter while deployed.
 
Naples, Fla., resident and ESPN tennis commentator Mary Carillo is president for USTA Serves.
 
"We are proud and excited to be involved in this important effort to support our soldiers and their families," Carillo said.

To date approximately 150 packages of portable tennis equipment have been sent out to U.S. servicemen and women following care packages from tennis organizations.
 
For more information on the Adopt-A-Unit Program, please visit www.usta.com/adoptaunit.
 
 

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