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Mon, March 18

Column: Save these dates! Fun tennis events on the horizon

We are now past the half-way point of August and the next large tennis event is looming: the PATA Labor Day NTRP Tennis Tournament, which will be held at the Yavapai College Tennis Center Sept. 4-6.

This special event consists of singles, doubles and mixed doubles for teenagers, adults, seniors and super seniors, and will be divided by the levels of 2.5, 3.0, 3.5, 4.0 and 4.5. The cost is $28 for singles and $24 per person for men/women's or mixed doubles per person.

The entry deadline is Aug. 30, and you enter and pay by going online to, look at the heading "Upcoming..." and click on the "Labor Day Tournament" registration button. If anyone has problems with that, you can always call me at 928-642-6775 or email at

Depending on the size of the draw, play could begin as early as Friday, Sept. 4 at 3 p.m. Players are guaranteed two matches for each event they are signed up for.


We're turning the corner into fall, the best tennis season of the year in Prescott, where the temperatures are great, less wind and rain exist and, in general, the weather is to kill for.

Starting Aug. 24 and continuing through Dec. 12, the best tennis deal in Prescott starts once again, the Yavapai College tennis classes on Mondays and Wednesdays - one at noon and another 5:30 p.m. - for an hour of expertise in learning the game of tennis, while earning one college credit. These classes fill up fast, so if you're interested register at as soon as possible.


There has been a slight change in the next Grand Prix NTRP one-day Mixed Doubles event for September. It is now scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 13 (no longer the 20th) due to the fact the person running it (me) will be at sectionals in El Paso, Texas, as well as another Prescott 8.0 team; so please make the change to your personal tennis calendar.


And then the first weekend in October (the 2nd through the 4th) we have the PATA Yavapai County NTRP Tennis Tournament, held at the Yavapai College Tennis Center.

Once again its singles, doubles and mixed events with a guarantee of two matches - and you can sign up at It's all the same information as the Labor Day event listed above.


Some people say to me, "Chris, tournaments make me nervous, so I'm not so inclined to play them." I can reply only that playing in these types of tennis events over and beyond your normal weekly game may send some queasy feelings through your stomach, but they are fun if given a chance.

It gives you a heightened sense of concentration, a bit more reason to practice and a chance to meet some new players who you might not normally see, let alone play against.

Each of the events listed here are by ability levels; thus, the whole idea is to keep matches within your limits. That does not mean you won't or can't get blown out, but it's much less likely to happen. When your match scores are more in the 6-3, 6-4, 7-5 range, no matter if you win or lose, you feel you've had a good time competing.

That's what the NTRP rating system is suppose to help make occur.

If for some reason you'd like to play, but can't find a doubles partner, shoot me an email ( and I'll see what I can do to help find one. As long as your personality isn't awful and you're honest about your ability level, we can probably get you hooked up with someone near your ability level.

So, don't say you haven't been invited to partake in some really fun tennis events, and if you're trying to learn the game or enhance your skills, sign up today for the fall tennis classes.

Chris Howard is a local USPTA Tennis Professional with over 40 years in the racquet and fitness industry. He can be reached at 928-642-6775 or


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