USTA Facility Awards go to Seven in Southern

June 20, 2017 10:32 AM

The USTA today announced seven facilities located in USTA Southern were among the 12 winners in the 36th annual USTA Facility Awards program, which recognizes excellence in the construction and/or renovation of tennis facilities throughout the country. Facilities will be honored at the Next Generation: A Tennis Innovation Workshop at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld in Orlando, FL, Oct. 11-15.

The 2017 USTA Facility Awards Program in USTA Southern winners are:

Public Courts: Small Tennis Centers (2 to 10 courts)

  • Ida Stone Jones Community Tennis Center, Bristol, Tenn.

Public Courts: Large Tennis Centers (11 or more courts)

  • Cooper Creek Tennis Center, Columbus, Ga.
  • Bitsy Grant Tennis Center, Atlanta, Ga.
  • Peachtree City Tennis Center, Peachtree City, Ga.

Educational Institution

  • Rockingham Community College Tennis Courts, Wentworth, N.C.

Private Facilities

  • Dataw Island Club Tennis Center, St. Helena Island, S.C.
  • Cape Fear Country Club, Wilmington, N.C.

The Bitsy Grant Tennis Center has hosted numerous national and sectional championships, including USTA National Clay Courts in 1955 won by Tony Trabert. The facility has the only public soft courts (13) and only public platform courts (three) in the city of Atlanta. BGTC is home to 69 ALTA teams, 21 USTA Adult League teams, and four Junior Team Tennis teams, as well as Monday-Wednesday weekly round robins for senior players.

Cape Fear Country Club, founded in 1896 is the oldest country club in North Carolina. The 900-member facility includes a state-of-the-art family activity center, café, fitness center, child center, junior activity room, tennis shop and 10 clay courts, two hard courts, one Pickle Ball court, all lighted.

Managed by the Columbus, Ga., Parks & Recreation Department, Cooper Creek is home to the Columbus State University (CSU) Men’s & Women’s Top 10 nationally ranked Division II tennis program and the Columbus Regional Tennis Association (CORTA), a 2,300 member organization that was recognized in 2016 as Community Tennis Association of the Year by both USTA Georgia & USTA Southern. The Columbus Regional Tennis Association, Columbus State University and the City of Columbus recently partnered on a $9.4 million dollar capital campaign to add 25 courts, a clubhouse, offices, a restroom facility, a maintenance building, storage and parking to the existing facility. It now consists of 39 clay courts and 16 post tension concrete DecoTurf courts – the same surface used at the US Open. In addition, six of the twelve 78-foot courts have PlaySight Cameras.

Dataw Island Club Tennis Center is home to an active social and USTA-playing community, with more than 20 USTA League Teams each year.  The club’s annual USTA Splash! Tournament, held in June, draws competitors to the Carolina Coast from South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia.  The event, featuring local Special Olympics athletes, benefits the local Special Olympics organization. 

The Ida Stone Jones Community Tennis Center was inspired by the vision of Bristol youth tennis advocate, Rogers McCall, past USTA Southern Tennessee State President and supporter of USTA and NJTL.  Four courts will have 10 and Under lines painted, and the facility was initiated and built as a public-private partnership promoting community, wellness, and sportsmanship through the sport of tennis. This partnership includes Bristol Tennessee City Schools and the City of Bristol.

The Peachtree City Tennis Center supports the vision and programming efforts of growing the game of tennis through USTA branded pathways. With more than 100 Adult teams, PCTC is committed to not only adult play, but also wheelchair and junior tennis. Between collegiate, national junior, state and adult tournaments, the facility averages an estimated 35,000 unique visitors a year.

In the summer of 2016, Rockingham Community College partnered with the Rockingham County Tennis Association to revitalize tennis in the county by resurfacing its six courts, becoming the cornerstone of renovated athletic facilities at the college.  In addition to being a site for educational courses, the courts are used by local high school tennis teams and the community.  The courts are the first location in Rockingham County where adult and youth tennis instruction is available to all community members – no membership required.

To be considered for an award, facilities must be under the jurisdiction of a park and recreation department, an educational institution, a nonprofit corporation or be a private or commercially owned and operated facility that offers both USTA and public programming designed to help grow tennis.

Facilities were judged on the following criteria: overall layout and adaptation to site; excellence of court surface and lights; ease of maintenance; accommodations for players, spectators and press/officials; aesthetics; graphics (including the use of signs and landscaping); amenities such as casual seating for spectators, food services and social areas; and the facilities’ participation in USTA programs.

Nominated facilities were voted on in the following categories: Public Courts that are either small tennis centers with 2-10 courts or large tennis centers with 11 or more courts; Educational Institutions; and Private Facilities that support the USTA and other “growth of the game” programs open to the public.

All 2017 award winners will receive a wall plaque and an all-weather sign, which can be mounted at the facility. Certificates of award will be made available to park and recreation departments, schools and those professionals responsible for the design, construction and maintenance of the facility. In addition, a one-year complimentary membership to the USTA will be awarded to each winning facility.

 

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