Got time this summer to squeeze in a little tennis? Have you always wanted to hit serves like McEnroe, forehands like Lendl, backhands like Wilander, volleys like Noah and overheads like Becker?
Take a tennis lesson. Maybe play in a league. Think about it, even if you've never hit a tennis ball over a net in your life. Or, if you play, consider improving your game this summer. There are a wide range of tennis programs scheduled over the summer that make it easy for anyone, and the cost is small.Most of the programs are directed at younger players between eight and 18. But there are classes for adults, too.
Here are some of the summer programs:
Salt Lake City Parks and Recreation: Called the USTA/National Junior Tennis League, this is a junior tennis program put together and run by the Salt Lake City Parks and Recreation and Utah Tennis Association. Thanks to special grant money, the lessons are inexpensive and rackets will be made available to those without.
The program is run by Kathryn Jones, Salt Lake City Parks tennis professional cost is only $5 for two one-hour lessons a week for six weeks. In addition to rackets, tennis balls will be furnished for all lessons and matches.
Lessons will be at Liberty, Glendale and Rose parks on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at Fairmont and Eleventh Avenue parks and Oakhills Tennis Center on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Lesson hours will be 9 a.m. for 8-9 year olds, 10 a.m. for 10-12 year olds, 11 a.m. for 13-14 year olds and noon for 15-18 year olds. Play will begin on Monday and run through July 23.
According to Jones, "The idea is to introduce the game to kids...to motivate them to play and increase their skills through instruction and playing. We've found that kids are motivated to improve their game by playing."
Those interested in playing should sign up at Liberty Park by Monday. For information call 596-5036 or 582-6067. Adult programs are also available.
Salt Lake County Recreation and Parks: There are three different tennis programs offered here--Youth Learn to Play, Competitive Tennis and private, semi-private and group lessons.
The Learn to Play program runs in two-week intervals and is for boys and girls up to 18. Cost is $15 for eight one-hour lessons held Monday through Thursday, 7. a.m. to noon. The first sessions begin Monday. Those interested can contact SLCRP or merely show up at tennis sites early Monday.
The Competitive Tennis program is for players 8 to 18 and is part of the Utah Tennis Association Junior and Little League programs. It is designed for intermediate players and runs through August. Cost is $40 and includes instruction, T-shirt, tennis balls for all matches and membership in the United State Tennis Association (necessary to play in many Utah tournaments). Teams are broken down into age and skill levels. Teams generally practice one day a week and play one match a week.
Popular programs because of the low cost, reported Jan Donchass, sports manager for SLCRP are the private, semi-private and group lessons. A private lesson is $40 for eight half-hour lesons, $30 each for semi-private for two players for 8 half-hour lessons; and $25 each for up to four players for eight one-hour group lessons. Fees include instruction and court costs.
According to Donchass, programs are offered at 24 sites in Salt Lake County. For more information call one of five centers--Salt Lake County Sports 468-2560; Copperview Community Center at 561-0075; Kearns Recreation Center at 967-4404; Magna Recreation Center at 250-2194; or Northwest Recreation Center at 596-0072. Players can sign up at one of the centers on Friday for the first session or early Monday at one of the playing sites.
Junion and Little League: This is the oldest and most successful tennis program in Utah. According to director Patti Kelly, between 130 and 140 teams, of up to 10 players each will participate this year.
Teams come from both private clubs and public programs, such as the Competitive Tennis program offered by County Recreation and Parks, and programs at Liberty Park. For information in where to sign up for Junion (14 and over) and Little (13 and under) League programs contact the Utah Tennis Association, 467-6161.
Sandy: Tennis classes are offered for players from age five on up at beginning, advanced beginning and intermediate levels. Recreation coordinator Trish Cooke said a new beginning parent-child class will also be held.
Classes on Monday, Wednesday and Friday run for one-hour a day for three weeks. Cost is $20. Daytime classes start at 7 a.m., with one evening class for adults at 6 p.m. Classes are taught at six locations: Flat Iron Mesa, Buttercup, Crescent, Willowcreek, Flacon and Bicentennial parks. There is also a tennis clinic which starts Monday at 1 p.m.
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Sandy schedules junior and adult league play. Classes run for one and a half hours and cost $20 for the three weeks. League players each receive a T-shirt.
First classes begin on Monday. For information call 566-1561
Bountiful: Adult classes are held Mondays and Wednesdays, or Tuesdays and Thursdays, and cost $16 for a four-week session. There are both morning and evening classes for beginners, advanced beginners and intermediates.
Classes for junior players are held Monday through Thursday in two-week sessions and cost $14. The first session started last Monday. The next session will begin June 20. The final two sessions begin July 5 and July 18. A Bountiful City Tournament will be held Aug. 1-6 for adult and junior players. For information call 298-6120.
Murray: Tennis classes for adults and junior players begin Monday and are held at Southwood Park, 6150 S. 725 East. Cost is $15 for a one-hour class that meets daily for one week. A new class begins every Monday. Sessions run from 8 a.m. to noon for juniors and adults, and from 6 to 7:30 p.m. for adults. For information call 264-2614.
Logan: There will be three two week sessions running Mondays through Thursdays for junior players this summer. Cost is $15. There will also be three tournaments for adults, juniors and mixed events--Singles Tournament is June 17-25, Doubles July 9-23 and City Tournament Aug. 4-20. For information call 752-3221.
Orem: The next session for group lessons and leagues will be July 18. Cost for 12 classes is $20. For information call 224-7155.
Provo: Two sessions are offered each summer. The first started this week, the next will be July 11 to Aug. 5. Cost is $18. Classes range from beginner to advanced for juniors and adults. For information call 379-6600.
Ogden: Four sessions--June 20-30, July 5-14, July 18-28 and Aug. 1-11--are offered at Mount Ogden Park, 3000 Taylor Ave. Cost for eight one-hour lessons is $15 for juniors, $20 for adults. Classes are held in the morning with one adult class in the evening. For information call 629-8253.