LEWISBORO, N.Y. – Fundraising for the half-dozen tennis courts for John Jay High School has nearly reached completion, with only another $50,000, or less than 15 percent, to go.
The next events in the fundraising series are scheduled for Friday and Saturday, April 5 and 6.
The weekend starts with a dinner/auction in the Waccabuc Country Club Carriage House from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday. Live music will be provided by Cal Kramer and Blonde Ambition with Patrick McEnroe as keynote speaker. Tickets are $150 per person, or $250 per couple.
A Youth Clinic for boys and girls in grades 1 through 8 will be given Saturday from 2 to 3 p.m. at Mount Kisco’s Saw Mill Club. The cost is $75 per person.
The weekend’s highlight, the Pro-AM Tournament, is scheduled for Saturday from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Saw Mill Club. Amateurs will be matched up with professionals from around the country, including Olympic Gold medalist Gigi Fernandez. The cost of playing in the tourney is $2,000 per person.
“Until now, our kids have been using local parks, like Fox Valley, but it’s 5 or 6 miles away. we lose time, there’s a court maintenance problem, and nobody came to watch in the parks because they’re so secluded,” said John Jay varsity tennis coach Rob Labriola.
“Most schools around here have their own tennis courts. Now that John Jay has its new turf field across the street at AP Field, the old softball field is available, and it’s perfectly flat.”
Labriola called friends at the U. S. Tennis Association, who helped to design and engineer the new courts, and got a monetary grant to help with construction.
“The Booster Club’s president, Marianne Flayhan, absolutely supported the idea,” Labriola said. “The club started us out with $50,000 and it’s been steamrolling ever since. Some of the big sums came from Adam R. Rose and Peter R. McQuillan and Martha and Richard Handler. About 35 families gave $1,000 or more.”
“We’ve begun testing the soil,” Labriola said, “and finishing the design and then we’ll ask for formal bids. The hardest part is getting approvals from the government agencies. Construction will only take two or three weeks.”
Work on the courts is expected to start in late summer or early autumn. Once everything is in place, Labriola expects tennis to be included in the school physical education program. The courts will be accessible to the high school, the middle school and Lewisboro’s four grammar schools. The public will also enjoy the use of the courts at certain hours. Lighting is included in the plan.
“This is a home run for the whole community,” Labriola said. “Make that a game-set-match for the whole community.”
For more information on the weekend's events, contact Denise Upham at email@example.com.
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