Letter - August 2019
Well here we are getting toward the end of summer, and as usual, it feels like it’s flying by. Can Christmas decorations be far behind? Your NSMTA Board has been busy, as have several members who have helped us substantially in various endeavors.
Larry Turville has initiated what we’re calling the NSMTA Invitational Team Series, and we’ve already seen a couple of great events this year run by Rich Bruer and Noble Hendrix. And more already on the schedule! So far, they have transpired in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida, but we’d like to see the concept extended to other parts of the country. They’re non-sanctioned 3-day team doubles events, usually focusing on the 60 to 75 age groups. You can find out more by checking nsmta.net. And let us know if you would be interested in starting one up!
In the next couple of weeks, our website will be transitioning to “a more robust platform” (techies seem to like to use the word “robust”). At the same time, certain portions of the website will no longer be available to non-members, so please re-up if your membership is expiring!
Please note that you can now advertise on our website for a nominal fee. This might be a way to highlight a tournament, ($75 for the three months leading up to the event) or let people know about a camp or a product.
Special thanks go out to Noble Hendrix and Dave Nash for their efforts in expanding our membership, and Jay Senter (along with Board member Ed Trost) for his work in securing deals for our members with Mizuno and New Balance. Coming soon, there will be a link on our website for accessing these special prices for members.
Congratulations to those members who have reached the finals of either a Cat I or II National this year. If you haven’t already, you will be receiving a long-sleeve shirt from NSMTA acknowledging your achievement. You be styling now!
Th..th..that’s all folks, for now anyway,
Letter - June 2019
Hello Everyone –
June is upon us, and the National Senior Men’s Tennis Association is celebrating its year and a half birthday! On the nsmta.net website, you can find out what has taken place lately. And, if your membership has expired, we would love to have you back. It seems to work better if you renew on a PC or desktop, rather than by phone; apparently this is a result of the security measures that are in place.
There has been good feedback concerning the Tournament List – It enables you to filter what you’re looking for by age group, area of the country, surface, date, etc. Also, please use the Places to Stay feature to find accommodations close to the playing site, along with the ability to shop for affordable prices as well. After having played the tournament, you will be able to rate the event on the Tournament Evaluation page.
Mark Winters (firstname.lastname@example.org) has been our website editor for a few months, and everything that’s written goes through him, probably including this missive. We’d love it if you’d like to submit an article, pictures, etc. You can read a veritable plethora of stories written by your fellow-members on the website. In addition to a few member volunteers helping with posting to the website, also newly onboard is Keiko Kimball Gouty. Trained at her father Mas’ knee, her expertise is already making a difference enabling the content to be posted much faster.
I thought I’d mention No Quit Academy in Las Vegas, Nevada, which I observed at the behest of member Les Buck. Their academic/tennis program is incredible, and you can read about it in Les’ article, “No Quit Tennis Academy - An Inspiration.” The organization requires significant funding, and if you know anyone or any company that might be able to contribute, contact Les, which you can also do through the website.
In the works is a Tournament Directors’ Handbook which guides TD’s in organizing a “best practices” tournament. (Thanks especially to Ed Trost, Steve Solomon and Alan Messer for their insights.) It “ain’t that easy”, as most of us know, but it just got easier. It’ll be available soon, again on the website, for free! It’s part of NSMTA’s effort to improve the experience of playing senior tennis.
We are always looking for ways to partner with the NSWTA, the women’s counterpart organization. They’ve existed since 1974. At the moment we’re discussing aging-up points, which the USTA currently vaporizes when you move up into a new age group. Other issues where we hope to provide input to the USTA are the points awarded for round-robin play, and the scheduling of tournaments which conflict with each other. We’re hoping that there may be some common ground for securing advertisers and sponsors for both organizations.
Well, I could go on and on, as I fear I already have, but please remember that this is your organization, and we want you to help us serve you. We as Board Members deeply appreciate the input, support, and assistance that many of you have already provided and look forward to even more.
Letter - April 2019
Thanks so much to those of you who have supported NSMTA in our formative period! It’s been a great experience for me to be able to connect with so many of you fellow senior tennis aficionados. I see more than ever what a band of brothers (and sisters) we are, sharing the love of our game and all the stories that go with it.
So far, your NSMTA Board of Directors, which includes Mas Kimball, Steve Duffel, Jerry Thomas, Ed Trost, Larry Turville, and myself, have been carrying most of the load. My thanks to all of them! Our reach is expanding as we go forward, and it is getting beyond what the six of us can manage effectively. Especially in the running of our website, (nsmta.net) which Mas has handled almost single-handedly, we could use some tech-savvy volunteers to share specific tasks. If you have a skill set that you think might be of benefit to us, please let us know! For instance, we need players to write stories about the tournaments that they play.
The season is still young, but we have already had some successes with our NSMTA doubles format. The Florida tournaments, two in Naples, and one in St Pete, as well as the previous tournament at Martha’s Vineyard, have received very favorable reviews. (See our Tournament Evaluation section on the website; we encourage you to submit reviews!) We will be encouraging more tournaments to adopt it because the round robin guarantees a certain number of matches. Some financial support from NSMTA is available for tournaments willing to use the format. For instance, a new event using the format and run by Mike Nelson in Palm Springs over Labor Day will be inaugurated. In addition, Larry Turville is acting as a NSMTA liaison for some team events that will be coming up in the next few months.
Another innovation will be a section on the website where tournaments can advertise their event. Cost will be $75 for a half-page for a three-month period. Let us know if you’re interested!
We kicked-off our Community Outreach Program in Houston at the 70/75 National Indoor. Keith Christman, who does such a good job as TD of the tournament, designated the local NJTL as the recipient of the players’ donations. Ralph Grieco, whose idea it was, whipped the crowd at the dinner into a frenzy of generosity, and with the matching funds from your NSMTA, Emily Schaefer/NJTL received a check for $1400.
At the end of the 2019 playing year, we plan on awarding Top Twenty medallions to any of our members who rank in the top twenty in the US in the final rankings. So start racking up those points now!! We are currently awarding shirts (quarterly) with the NSMTA logo to members who either win a national Category I or II tournament.
Note: If you’re reading this before April 1, and are interested in playing on a US team at the ITF Super Senior Team Championships in Croatia in September, you must fill out the USTA form ASAP! Find it at usta.com.
We are currently testing out formats for a Forum to be up and running on the website in the near future. We look forward to your weighing in on various topics!
And, th…th..that’s all folks; for now anyway.