The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on November 10, 1968 · Page 118
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 118

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, November 10, 1968
Page 118
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1 4 Palm Beach Post-Times, Sunday, Nov. 10, 1968 Fine Facilities Make The County Perfect Place For Tennis Buffs are 130 a year, and an added advantage to membership, according to Esser, Is a games arrangement service whereby games are arranged for members In advance. Local inter-club tournaments are held during the year, on Sunday afternoons. The Riviera Beach Racquet Club, located on Singer Island Is another private club offering four composition courts and a teaching professional available for members' use. It Is perhaps the finest tennis facility In the north county area. From Vero Beach to Boca Raton and west to Pahokee and Belle Glade the area features approximately 100 tennis courts, most of which are available to residents and winter visitors alike. Listed below Is a survey of existing clinics during the year, which are sponsored by the West Palm Beach Recreation Department. Looking on with interest are (left to right) Rena-to Laumier, Steven Blumcnthal, Beth Goddard, Dindy Goddard and Richard Balleau. KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE BALL Professional Dick Banazak emphasizes the need for keen eyesight and concentration in hitting each ball in the center of the racquet, to a group cf youngsters participating in a tennis clinic at the Howard Park courts. Banazak conducts several eludes the list, and Is one of the favorite adult tournaments in the area. Family membership at the tennis club is $30 per year, with $20 set for Individual memberships. Several local tournaments are sponsored on weekends during the year, and In addition, inter-club matches with neighboring tennis clubs are scheduled at appropriate Intervals. Howard Park, located In central West Palm Beach, ranks with the Delray facility in terms of court space, but at the moment, offers no shower and dressing facilities. Seven lighted soft composition courts and two unlighted Teniflex all-weather courts see a great deal of use, the year around. Night play Is especially popular during the hot summer months. During the winter, the courts are in almost constant use, with lighting facilities used by those who must work in the daylight hours. Howard Park, for years the tennis center of West Palm Beach, continues to offer taxpayers and visitors alike low cost tennis the year around, according to pro Dick Banazak. A $5 Individual membership per year Is charged, with many taking advantage of this membership rate. Banazak runs two major tournaments each year, which are sponsored by the West Palm Beach Recreation Department. The South Florida Tennis Championships attract out of state players as well as local talent. The January event Is the top tournament at Howard. In addition, the city sponsors the Merrihew Junior Championships each August, which Is open to players ranging to 18. State and local junior players annually participate In the event. Boca Raton has two Teniflex all-weather courts for public use, while nearby Florida Atlantic University has eight similar courts for use of the student body. Also In Boca Raton, St. Andrews' school for Boys' the summertime training camp of the Miami Dolphins football club, has eight teniflex courts for use of the tennis team and students. Peaches Bartkowicz, nationally ranked women's player, Is a student at Boca's Mary-mount College. The Boynton Beach Civic Center offers its residents and winter visitors four teniflex all-weather courts, all of which are lighted. The city sponsors a tournament during the year, and also allows the Palm Beach Junior College Men's tennis team use of the courts for practice and for home matches. This year Coach Harris McGirt's squad posted the finest record of any team In the short athletic history of the school. Palm Beach's Seaview Avenue Courts are heavily used by residents and winter visitors the year around. In addition to the Palm Beach Junior Invitational tournament, sponsored by the Town of Palm Beach and the Palm Beach Tennis Association, several area tournaments are held during the year for local players. The Palm Beach Tennis Association also sponsors a planned tennis program for young people interested In tennis. Clinics, group and private lessons, along with inter-club team matches are part of the program. The Southside Tennis Association serves the south west Palm Beach area at Phipps Park, with four Teniflex courts. The Association serves the area with a nine-month program of tennis activity for youngsters and adults alike. Although only In existence for three years, the Southside program ranks with the leaders in this area. Newest of the tennis associations is the North-County Tennis Association which organized in January of this year, "for the purpose of promoting tennis In the area, particularly for young children," president Fred Kohlmeyer stated. The North County Association serves a wide area, Including Riviera Beach, Lake Park, Palm Beach Gardens and Jupiter. Unlike its two predecessors, the North County Association utilizes many courts of different locations to Implement Its program. A highlight of the first year's operation was an association sponsored trip to Hollywood's pro tennis tournament at David Park. "The youngsters really enjoyed seeing top pros like Pan-cho Gonzales play," president Kohlmeyer said." Two top area teaching pros are building an excellent tennis complex at the Lake Worth Racquet Club, a private facility offering the public the very latest in tennis equipment and play. Bill Esser and David Buerkle, a pair of local players, have built the club Into an all around tennis center. Two major tournaments are sponsored each year, the Autumn open in the fall and the Spring open In April. Last year's Autumn open saw Gardner Mul-loy lose In the finals to Jamie Pressley, a local boy and number two netter on the University of Florida's tennis team, in a match which sparked a great deal of Interest. The Lake Worth Racquet club has six composition courts and is adding a swimming pool, clubhouse and patio area, along with tournament class lights to the courts. According to Esser, this facility, when completed, will be the only one In the county with tournament class lights. Family memberships Determination Paying Off For Southside Connie Dalton is a vivacious, tennis playing mom who wields a wicked racket on tennis courts throughout Palm Beach County. Connie and her husband John however, dreamed about a first-rate neighborhood tennis facility where their three daughters might receive top-notch instruction from a teaching professional. So they joined with other interested parents to promote junior tennis in West Palm Beach's south end. The group organized, and after much groundwork and many meetings, received a charter from the city of West Palm Beach. The newly -tormod organization chose as its name, "The Southside Tennis Association." and began operation In November, 15. Today Southside is still striving toward its goal of achieving better tennis facilities as the association celebrated its third anniversary in August. Much hasbeen accomplished during the past three years and much is going on at present to achieve Southside's dream. Recently Bob Foster, president of the tennis association, revealed that Southside, in conjunction with the City of West Palm Beach Recreation Department, is hoping to en- -tlce major tennis tournaments back to the Palm Beaches. "Tennis is having a real rebound In Palm Beach County and West Palm Beach in particular," he said. Foster's comment is true enough. The South Florida Tennis Championships held at West Palm's Howard Park in February was for years a regular tour stop for many of the top-ranking amateur players. Vic Sexlas and Maria Bueno competed in the tournament with many other top-flight amateur tennis players. The tournament fell ott several years ago because ot financial reasons, and got a spark of rebirth last year according to Dick Banazak, tennis professional at Howard Park. Southside utilizes the facilities at Howard when the Association sponsors a major tournament as there IS a lack of space at Phlpps Park. Hopefully this will not always be the case according to Connie Dalton, who nonetheless is waiting list of those wishing to join. Currently 80-100 families belong to the Southside clan end several times that many would be members today were it not for lack of court space. Why was the Southside Idea such a huge success? Connie Dalton, now secretary-treasurer of the organization, attributes the growth to a combination of reasons, beginning with the need for a group of this type. "It was a desire on the part of the public, parents and children for this type of activity." she said. "Tennis is really a social game," she continued, "like a sorority or fraternity. You want to be part of a group. That's why I think we've had so much success." Undoubtedly this is true, but superb organization spelled out the success Southside has enjoyed. A local professional, Whitney Powers, was hired by the Association to give private, semi-private or group lessons to members on weekdays after school. "He's done a magnificent job, and Isespe-cially good with young children," Connie thankfully remarked. Under Powers' able tutelage, youngsters improved Tennis buffs are finding Palm Beach County to be one of South Florida's biggest net areas, with public and private courts just minutes away from most any location. The county as a whole Is expanding its tennis facilities to meet the Increasing demand for more court space and better all-around facilities. Perhaps the finest public courts available are to be found at the Delray Beach Tennis Club. The club Is owned by the city and run by the recreation department, and boasts nine Teniko soft composition courts, three of which are lighted. In addition to a fully equipped pro shop, the club offers shower and locker facilities to the weary netter who has finished a day's play. According to professional Charles Thurber, 2,250 residents and tourists played tennis at the club during the Christmas New Year holiday, while 1,900 enjoyed the facilities during Easter week. The club sponsors three major tournaments during the year and several local tournaments. The State Veterans tennis event kicks off the tournament slate In the latter part of January, with the Gulf-stream Junior Tourney held in April. This is a popular tournament with teenagers, many coming from Miami and the Tampa-St. Petersburg area to compete along with local players. The State Men's and Women's Tournament con- their tennis In half-hour sessions and played In weekly round robin tournaments held on Saturday mornings. Last year over 100 children received instruction from Powers, and the number is likely to increase this year. Southside spearheaded the resurfacing of four Phipps courts with "Teniflex," an all-weather non-maintenance type of court composition. The Southside Tennis Association holds team matches at appropriate intervals during the year, with competition a prime motivating force for the group, according to Connie. A youngster becomes eligible for a team match by playing ladder competition in his age group. The ladder consists ot a youngster's name placed on a piece of wood, with the players ranked In order of ability. As the child Improves his game, his name is advanced up the ladder. While the main Idea of the Association is to get the young people playing tennis, there Is nothing to keep the adults from enjoying the sport. Inn .-. i WEST PALM BEACH Fornt Hill High School lour asphalt courts, noughts. Howard Park Seven clay courts with lights and two all weather courts without lights. L'urrle Park Two all weather courts with lights. Phipps Park Four Teniflex all-weather courts, all with lights. Roosevelt Two clay courts. A. J. Gaines Two all-weather courts with lights. Flamingo Playground Two all weather courts. Cardinal Newman High School two asphalt courts, no lights. LAKE WORTH John I. Leonard High School two asphalt courts, no lights. Barton Beach Twi 'O asphalt courts, no lights. Sunset Ridge Park Two asphalt courts, nollghts. McDonald Park Two concrete courts, no lights. PALM BEACH Seaview Avenue Four soft composition courts and two Tenltlex all weather courts, no lights, tor use ot residents and visitors. RIVIERA BEACH Municipal Court Two asphalt courts, no lights. LAKE PARK Kelsey Park Two asphalt courts with lights. JUPITER Jupiter High School Four asphalt courts, no lights. LANTANA Municipal courts Two concrete courts with lights. BOYNTON BEACH Civic Center Four Teniflex courts with lights. BOCA RATON Memorial Park Two Teniflex courts with lights. Boca Raton High School Two asphalt courts, no lights. DELRAY BEACH Delray Beach Tennis Club Nine Teniko Courts, three lighted. Teen Town Center Two asphalt courts with lights. BELLE GLADE McDonald Park One concrete court with lights. VERO BEACH Pocahontas Park Four concrete courts, two lighted. FORT PIERCE Plnewood Park Two concrete courts with lights. Dan McCarty High School Four asphalt courts, lighted. Indian River Junior College Four asphalt courts, no lights. NORTH PALM BEACH North Palm Beach Country Club Two composition courts with lights. STUART Memorial Park Two clay courts, no lights. Civic Center Six concrete courts, no lights. PAHOKEE City Park Two concrete courts, no lights. ATLANTIC OCEAN J m grateful to the Recreation Department and Recreation Director Gordon Sprague for the use of the Howard Park facili- ties. "They've been very cooperative," Connie said, "and we certainly appreciate It." Southside's agreement with City of West Palm Beach Is an Interesting one. Under terms of their charter, the Association has use of 50 per cent of the court space at Phipps Park, located four blocks south of Southern Boulevard on U.S. 1. The Association, in turn, helps maintain and improve existing tennis facilities at Phipps and has the option of hiring a professional to give members lessons on the Phipps' courts. This arrangement has served to upgrade tennis In the south end of West Palm Beach. Once the Southside ball got rolling it ballooned far beyond the wildest dreams of the original few who conceived it. The response was immediate and overwhelming. Membership has grown by leaps and bounds until lack of facilities (Southside has use of two of the four Phipps courts) forced the Association to adopt a cedent fresh water fishing abounds for the sporting angler. EMI All, A most cordial invitation is extended readers of this edition to visit Belle Glade - located on the shores of Lake Okeechobee. Belle Glade offers an abundance of activities in addition to being the winter vegetable capital of the world! Come and see for yourself why this section of Palm Beach County is moving forward! GULF OF MEXICO i A sporty 9 hole course awaits the golfing enthu siast. A modern club house, dining room and lounge assures the vacationer a place to relai and have fun! f 1 'r.. . A Four hundred camp sites at the Marina with mod- 0 The agriculture center of Florida, on the shores of Lake Okeechobee ern conveniences. Water and electricity on each site. Docking facilities for yachts. 4 i" :.' - -It- . " JVj "Jr isft ;s .jaw 12 r TT7--

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