By Tammi Copelli, Junior Leagues Vice President
As the summer comes to a close and the beautiful fall weather is about to be upon us, thoughts of tennis always come to mind. It’s always my favorite time to play. Fall registration just began on July 1, so you are just in time to either register an existing junior team or start a new junior team.
You may ask, “Can anyone start a new team?” I get this question a lot. The first thing you need to do is be sure your club or neighborhood courts are registered with ALTA. If you are not sure, don’t worry. A quick search on the ALTA website (altatennis.org) will help you answer that question. Just search under Facilities to find your neighborhood or club. If it’s not there, click on Request New Facility where you’ll find a New Facility Request application. Fill out the simple form, and ALTA will take it from there. A member of the ALTA Rules Committee will contact you and plan to meet you at the courts to do a facility inspection. It’s very important to ALTA to have facilities in good working order that are safe for its members. So now that you have a facility, and eight players, you are all set to enter a roster. You must do this by July 30 (roster deadline) to have a team this fall. Fall play will begin September 11.
The ALTA Junior tennis program is one of the BEST bargains in town. For only $15 a year, juniors (7 to 18 years of age) can participate in a spring and a fall league, play competitive tennis with friends, access all the benefits tennis can offer, and set themselves up with a sport they could possibly play for the rest of their lives.
The benefits of tennis for your child go way beyond winning or losing a tennis match. Sometimes, the best life lessons start on a tennis court. I was honored to witness that last season while monitoring a City Finals match. Patience, fairness, determination, compassion, and kindness were all on display that day. It was an honor to watch, and it made me that much more determined to encourage as many parents as possible to have their children join ALTA and be part of something extraordinary.
So, fall is almost here, and so is another great ALTA fall season. If your children are not playing, please encourage them to do so and find a team for them, or as I stated earlier, you can start a team for them. Please know we are always here to help. As I do each year, I am looking forward to seeing all the juniors and parents embark on a new season of tennis this fall.