DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

July 5, 2012

Best Buddies to benefit from tennis challenge


LONDONDERRY — Organizers of the Best Buddies NH Tennis Challenge are hard at work, getting ready for the event July 26-29.

Tennis players, it's time to register and be part of this charitable event.

The students on the Tennis Challenge Planning Committee have continued to work hard and have gotten strong support from local businesses. They have received commitments for sponsorships and donations of prizes, raffle items and supplies for the tournament.

The Londonderry Rotary Club has become a major sponsor with a $2,000 donation to Best Buddies NH. The club also will be providing volunteers to run the food booth and barbecue.

The Best Buddies NH Tennis Challenge website, bestbuddiesnhtennis.com , was designed by Jared Schwalb, a recent Londonderry High School graduate. The website is up and tournament registrations are coming in. Registration forms and instructions are available on the site. Visit today to register before the brackets fill up.

The Best Buddies NH Tennis Challenge tournament will be held July 26-29 at the Pinkerton Academy tennis courts in Derry. Some early rounds will also be played at the Londonderry and Derry recreational tennis courts.

The main events in the tournament are: men's singles and doubles, women's doubles, mixed doubles, and Junior 15 and under co-ed singles.

These events are open to all ages and ability levels. Consolation brackets insure that all players compete in at least two matches and have a chance to advance.

Those who register early are guaranteed a free tournament T-shirt. Some amazing players have already registered, including college players, high school standouts from the present and past, and some outstanding adult players from around the state.

Tournament winners will receive awards and prizes. The website will begin to feature some of the many exciting raffle items, including autographed items and tickets from major sports teams and stars, a tennis racket and tickets to popular attractions.

There will be a barbecue, food booth, tennis vendors and information about the Best Buddies NH programs.

All proceeds from the event benefit Best Buddies NH. Special activities include a retro-racket mini tournament, using rackets from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s and a fastest serve contest. Prizes will be awarded for the best retro tennis outfit and the fastest serve.

There will also be a free adaptive tennis clinic for young people with disabilities and their families, along with information about adaptive tennis opportunities.

The adaptive clinic will be run by Sylvia Swartz, a tennis pro from Longfellow Club in Wayland, Mass. She has more than 35 years of experience teaching adaptive tennis and coaching teams for people with disabilities.

Swartz is the director of Handi-Racket Tennis, an award-winning program for adaptive tennis. She and a group of her athletes will come to New Hampshire to hold an adaptive tennis clinic on the last day of the tournament, Sunday, July 29, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The students hope the clinic will generate interest in building local adaptive tennis opportunities, including support for newly formed Special Olympic tennis teams.

Local families who have young people with disabilities are encouraged to come out on Sunday and see what adaptive tennis is all about. They will receive free T-shirts, lunch and medals of participation. The clinic is free.

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