Tennis events have long been used to promote and support various causes. USTA Florida often sponsors events that benefit a wide range of charities, including our own USTA Florida Section Foundation. It’s part of our culture, and one of the reasons I love working for this organization.
I never thought that having a passion for a cause actually could change the game of tennis. Then, last fall I got a call from one very determined Aussie, who lost his sister to breast cancer. That’s when my perspective on cause-driven tennis events changed. Correction: That’s when my perspective on all tennis tournaments changed.
Imagine you are about to enter center court at a grand slam. Lights go out, and the stadium falls silent. The DJ cues up the most heart-pumping theme music on your playlist. You hear the crowd erupt as the announcer introduces you and your partner. You walk onto the court, spotlight on you. The umpire climbs into the chair and the ball kids take their places. You are about to play the match of your life. Oh, and WHEN you win the match, you also beat cancer.
That’s the kind of amazing experience that more than 100 Florida tennis players had this April when we introduced them to Ten15 Tennis.
Born in Australia, as a way to raise money for breast cancer charities, Ten15 breaks most of the traditional tournament rules. Ten points in a match. 15 matches in a tournament. One court. One serve. No lets. Gender neutral. Umpires, ball kids, a DJ, and a crowd that’s encouraged to cheer YOU (and your partner) on.
Thanks to our friends at XGLOsive, we broke a few more rules, hosting the first-ever Ten15 black-light tennis tournaments in Altamonte Springs and Lighthouse Point. Both were hugely popular.
If you missed our first series of events, don’t worry. We’re planning to bring Ten15 back this fall, and we invite all of you to be part of this exciting new event series.
Visit USTAFlorida.com/Ten15 to learn more about it and how you can host an event in your community. Together, we can #maketennisfun and make a difference.