USTA New England Hosts
Third Annual Tennis Weekend
James Maimonis, Communications and Engagement Coordinator | November 20, 2018
NEWTON, MA- USTA New England successfully hosted its third annual Tennis Weekend event from November 16-17 at the Boston Marriott in Newton, MA. Filled with food, networking and educational speakers and sessions, Tennis Weekend has become a fan favorite for attendees, speakers and sponsors alike.
Around 200 tennis enthusiasts from New England and beyond came together this year with the purpose of learning and sharing new methods to grow or improve their tennis organization, thus growing the game of tennis.
Sessions such as, “Set your Organization Up for Success” and “Let PR Give you the Advantage,” were just two of six educational offerings presented throughout the weekend. Breakout sessions were led by USTA New England and National staff, USTA Foundation staff and working professionals in and outside of the tennis industry.ADVERTISEMENT
“Tennis Weekend was a rewarding experience as I was able to learn about some of the impressive untold local stories and provide some insight into how to bring these stories to life through proactive media outreach,” said TV news reporter/anchor, Evan White, and member of the Let PR Give you the Advantage panel. “It was refreshing to engage an audience of active listeners who know their communities well and care so deeply about growing this great sport. It is my sincere hope that they were able to take away methods they can put into action quickly to reach their target audiences.”
In addition, Tom Farrey, Executive Director for the Aspen Institute’s Sports & Society Program, concentrated his keynote address on the values of Project Play, an initiative he launched in 2013 that provides organizations with tools to build healthy communities through sports.
Richard Chang, Chair of USTA ‘s National Learning and Leadership Development Committee and member of the National Strategic and Creative Planning Committee, opened the weekend on Friday afternoon with his session on the strategic directions moving forward to grow tennis.
Yasmine Orborn, USTA’s Manager of Diversity & Inclusion, led a D&I themed panel on Saturday morning that focused on ways to be more inclusive in order to bring new populations into the game.
“This year’s tennis weekend featured the most diverse group of discussion topics we’ve ever had. From community and competitive tennis to public relations and D&I, we made an effort to cater to an even wider range of tennis supporters,” said Sarah Rice, USTA New England Manage, Community Development and event organizer.
For the first time ever in 2018, USTA New England’s annual Awards Ceremony was incorporated into Tennis Weekend. Five award winners were celebrated, and joining them were two Tennis Industry Magazine Champions of Tennis winners as well as the Irving Levine Award winner.
USTA New England Immediate Past President, Scott Steinberg, emceed the ceremony that recognized the most deserving people and organizations in the New England tennis community in 2018.
The 2018 USTA New England award winners are as follows:
Community Tennis Association (CTA) of the Year: Central Lincoln County YMCA, Damariscotta, ME
National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) Chapter of the Year- New HYTEs, New Haven, CT
Junior Team Tennis Organizer of the Year- Rebekka Chenard (New HYTEs), Meriden, CT
Organization of the Year- River Valley Club, Lebanon, NH
Edwin Goodman Family of the Year- Meyer Family, Camden, ME
New HYTEs also took home TI Magazine’s NJTL of the Year award, while Toni Wiley, Executive Director of Sportsmen’s Tennis & Enrichment Center in Dorchester, MA, won the Grassroots Tennis Champion of the Year.
Ninety-six year old Henry Tiberio, of Beverly, MA, was honored as the first recipient of the annual Irving Levine Award. The award honors the life and legacy of New England Senior Tennis Association founder, Irving Levine, and is given to someone who has demonstrated a lifetime of service and dedication to the game.
“We don’t get events like this very often. To have people there from different sectors of tennis, and for two days having time to really have face to face meetings and exchange ideas and help each other, that is incredibly valuable. There is no trading for that,” said Mavi Sanchez-Skakle, Executive Director of New HYTEs. “Everyone in our section is supporting the work we do. With the combination of tennis and education, we are growing the sport of tennis, creating pathways for our kids to lead healthy lives and opening doors for them that they might not have had otherwise. To get an award for that is truly amazing.”
“USTA New England is grateful to have so many tennis enthusiasts dedicated to growing and developing tennis. To be selected from a field of such worthy nominees is a true honor, and we are thrilled to honor the winners and all they’ve done to give back to the sport,” said USTA New England President and CEO, Peter Parrotta.
Tennis Weekend attendees were served a buffet dinner on Friday, a buffet breakfast on Saturday and a plated lunch on Saturday during the ceremony. Upon arrival, each guest was also given a gift bag with products from event sponsors.
USTA New England would like to thank the following sponsors for being a part of Tennis Weekend: Corporate Communications, Netknacks, Clutch Towels, Kourts, AD LOVE, Bridgewater State University EDGE, International Tennis Hall of Fame, USPTA New England, Granny Squibb’s Organic Iced Tea, Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers, Wint Filipek Sr. Memorial Tennis Tournament and Ame & Lulu.
New England Tennis Weekend 2019 will take place from November 15-16 once again at the Boston Marriott Newton.