More Fun in the Sun for the Tennis Club!

More fun in the sun on the sport courts!

Jen Walden

Many of our members gathered to celebrate the kick-off of our 2021-22 tennis season at our Welcome Back Picnic on Nov. 20. JD Stephenson coordinated the in-house play schedule, and John and Irene Schlenker served up some great sub-style sandwiches for lunch. Thanks to everyone who helped out with the festivities. We had a blast!

For many years, the SunBird Tennis Club has participated in social tournaments with many other clubs in the Valley. We host a few of those gatherings here on our beautiful sport courts, and the other clubs reciprocate when we are invited to visit their facilities to participate in these events. It presents an opportunity to play with other tennis enthusiasts in the area and socialize with like-minded individuals and clubs in nearby active-lifestyle communities.

It takes a lot of organization on the part of the tournament directors, the luncheon coordinators, and much-appreciated volunteers to make these events fun and successful.

On Nov. 27 we hosted Springfield here at our courts and served up a scrumptious lunch of fried chicken (my favorite) with various salads and desserts. Thanks to Barb Wallace and Pam Tiffany for coordinating the luncheon and to JD Stephenson for coordinating the tournament schedule with his Springfield counterpart. And many thanks to all the volunteers!

We hosted another social here on Dec. 11 when Cottonwood visited our courts to play against SunBird/Springfield teams. Thanks to Jenifer Walden and Joan Boyle for coordinating the super “baked potato bar” luncheon. These events would not be possible without the many volunteers who step forward to help. Thanks, everyone!

We will be visiting Sun Lakes and Trilogy in January for more tennis (and eating) fun! Go SunBird!

Our current in-house weekly club schedule is outlined below:

Monday: Ladies Doubles, 8:30 to 10 a.m., coordinator Barb Hall

Monday: Men’s Doubles, 10 a.m. to noon, coordinator Gil Gilliland

Tuesday: Men’s Doubles, 8 to 10 a.m., coordinator Jack Barber

Wednesday: Mixed Doubles, 10 a.m. to noon, coordinator John Schlenker

Thursday: Ladies Doubles, 8 to 10 a.m., coordinator Joan Boyle

Friday: Mixed Doubles, 8 to 10:30 a.m. (courts 1 and 2), coordinator Jack Barber

Reminder: Our membership fees are due this month; $40 for active members and $15 for social members. You may give your cash or check to either Perry or John.

There is a current court schedule that details both tennis and pickleball assigned times posted on the tennis board at the courts. Tennis sign-up sheets are posted on the tennis board at the sport courts for some of our scheduled tennis activities, or you may email the coordinators directly. You will find contact information for our members on our Member List. If you are playing as a homeowner or resident (not part of the SunBird Tennis Club), please reserve your desired court times on the available slots on the court reservation sheets. We are excited to have acquired even more new members to our Tennis Club. John and Sharlene Jerome have recently moved to Arizona from Kirkland, Wash., and they have decided to make SunBird their permanent home. Welcome! It’s really great to see fresh faces on the courts.

The Tennis Club would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family of Jim Seaman. We are so sorry for your loss. We lost a great friend and longtime tennis buddy when Jim passed. You will be missed, Jim!

Here are a couple of tennis tips that I have found inspiring:

Tip 1: Early Preparation. You cannot prepare soon enough—turn your hips and shoulders before the oncoming ball bounces on your side. Get that racquet back!

Tip 2: Exaggerate Your Follow Through. The majority of all people, no matter what sport they play, can improve by following through when you get a little nervous that your opponent is in control of play and moving you around. Exaggerate your follow through; do not think, “just hit the ball.” Move your feet!

If you are interested in joining our SunBird Tennis Club, please contact our president John Schlenker at 847-525-7648. Our next meeting will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 4, at 5 p.m. in the Lakeview Room.

Happy and healthy wishes to everyone for the new year!