Iowa Veterans Attend ThanksUSA Pro-Am
Two Iowa veterans recently had a one-of-a-kind experience at the USTA National Campus in Orlando. Thanks to help from USTA Iowa, Jim Bailey (Retired U.S. Marines) and Carole Rowland (Retired U.S. Air Force) had the opportunity to attend the inaugural ThanksUSA Charity Tennis Pro-Am in December. Jim and Carole each received $500 matching grants ($1,000 total) from USTA Iowa and ThanksUSA to help cover expenses for the event. The event was held to help raise money for scholarships for military spouses and children.
This wasn’t USTA Iowa’s first experience with ThanksUSA, as it held a free clinic for veterans in Iowa in August as well. The weekend featured an open hitting session followed by a happy hour on Saturday, December 11.
The fun continued on Sunday morning beginning with a tour of USTA National Campus. Then came the playing portion of the weekend. There was a veterans tournament in the morning that Carole played a few matches in.
The pro-am portion of the weekend started Sunday afternoon, featuring tennis greats like Francis Tiafoe, Mackenzie McDonald and Robby Gineprie. Tiafoe is ThanksUSA’s National Spokesperson.
- Left to Right - Jean Pletchette (sports director for ThanksUSA - lives in Winterset IA), John Terpkosh (USTA Iowa TSR), Jim Bailey, Carole Rowland, Nicole Berger (instructor for Des Moines vet program)
Both Jim and Carole mentioned what a wonderful experience the weekend was and how much they enjoyed the opportunity to be there. In keeping with the theme of the weekend, Carole even said she “had a smash of a time.”
Jim has spent many years in Florida in the past and was glad to be able to go back and visit and enjoy the weather again.
For more information on the event, please click here.