New Jersey Hosts the Best and Brightest in the Game
On the shores of Franklin Lake, New Jersey, players from all over the nation converged on the Indian Trail Club (and 17 other area clubs) in early March for the APTA Men's and Women's National Championships. They were met with cheerful faces and crisp lake breezes. APTA Men's and Women's
Day One: President's Cup
Despite the best laid plans of organizers and Tournament Director Michael Gillespie, a driving wintery mix of snow, sleet and rain welcomed the participants to the Men's and Women's President's Cup on Thursday morning, March 7th.
Coming off a two-year winning streak, the Region V (Chicago/Midwest) ladies had high expectations going into the President's Cup. 2013, however, was not to be their year in the six-region match-up. In round-robin play, Region I dominated Pool A and Region III in Pool B. In a four-te[...]
Among an audience of long-time friends, family members, and the best platform tennis players in the world, David Ohlmuller was lauded for his talent and his resilience. The night was filled with laughs and some deep emotions, as Ohlmuller's story captivated the crowd.
Tim McAvoy, last year's inductee and a member of the Hall of Fame Committee, introduced Ohlmuller.
The transcript of McAvoy's induction speech is printed below in its entirety.
Tonight we honor a man who dominated the sport of platform tennis and then came back from a near death accident to reach the pinnacle of our sport for a second time.
Born in 1969, our inductee was introduced to the game by his mother, Ginna, who in addition to playing platform tennis was the Executive Director for the American Platform Tennis Association. In fact, in his early teenage days our inductee was bribed by his mother to play—h[...]
Camille Thoman didn't go to Dorset, Vermont expecting to make a movie about platform tennis, but when she and her mother stepped into the paddle hut at the Dorset Field Club, she found a group of senior players that she found irresistible.
"We walked in, and there were these old men there making fun of each other, bantering and sharing laughs around the sport," Thoman said. "My mother said, 'You should make your next film about these guys,' and to be honest, I was charmed to my tippy toes by them."
Thoman, an acclaimed director, who has worked with talent such as Tony nominee Mireille Enos, Oscar nominee Melissa Leo and Oscar winner Timothy Hutton, as well as produced her own one-woman theater pieces, flew with producer Elizabeth Yng-Wong to Vermont thinking they would be filming a short. They quickly found that they had something bigger on their hands.
"These are special people[...]
Hellos and Goodbyes The board welcomed four new members and said farewell to three whose terms expired. The APTA membership elected in David Lee, Region II, Shannon Vinson, Region V, Nathan LeFevre, Region VI, and Freddy Goldenberg, Region VII. Juan Martinez-Arraya, Tina Kelly, and Peter Lauer will be missed. Arraya brought great energy and dedication to the Clinics and Exhibitions Committee. Kelly's savvy marketing, writing and editing skills were invaluable for all APTA communications. And Lauer, head farmer for six years of the Grow the Game initiative, boosted a good program into a great program.
Financials Alia Main reported that the APTA is in excellent financial health at this time. Revenues continued to increase.[Note: The 2013 990 Form Filing shows that the net assets of the APTA were in excess of $500k, an all-time high]
Sponsorship/Branding Viking has deepened its commit[...]
Residence: Toronto, Ontario
Occupation: Contributing writer at UrbanMoms.ca and social media specialist at Corns Entertainment
Years of Service on the APTA Board: Two
Family: Son Will (5), APTA National Champ 2033
Years Playing: I started when I was 10. So *cough, cough* 18? Okay, 34 years!
How did you get started playing platform tennis? Our family moved to London, Ontario, where they had one in-ground court. We started playing and taking train trips to Toronto to play the "big city" kids in tournaments. A few years later we moved to Toronto and chose to live where we did because of the ties we had already made with the platform tennis players there.
Contribution to the APTA Board/Contribution to the platform
tennis community. My unofficial goal with the APTA is to get the name changed to NAPTA (North American Platform Tennis Association). Canada need[...]
The APTA's "Grow the Game" program, now in its seventh year, has offered assistance to thirty facilities so far. This year over forty inquiries were sent in, and eight formal proposals were received. Each proposal is measured on seven criteria and then scaled. The proposals are carefully considered by the Growth Committee and then are approved by the APTA Board. For the 2013-2014 season, the APTA has allocated over $150,000 in grants and loans to eleven facilities…..[Click on image to read more]
Source: Platform Tennis Magazine, Vol. 15, Issue 1 Sept./Oct. 2013
APTA Approved Rules of Wheelchair Platform Tennis (TRIAL PERIOD)
1. RULES OF PLAY
The game of wheelchair platform tennis follows the Official Rules of Platform Tennis with the following exceptions:
a) The Two Bounce Rule The wheelchair platform tennis player is allowed two bounces of the ball. The player must return the ball before it bounces a third time. The second bounce can be either in or out of the court boundaries and can be after the ball hits the screen.
b) The Wheelchair The wheelchair is considered part of the body and all applicable rules, which apply to a player's body, shall apply to the wheelchair.
c) The Service The service shall be delivered in the following manner:
i. Immediately before commencing the service, the server shall be in a stationary position. The server shall then be allowed one push before striking the ball.
ii. The server shall throughout[...]
How do you get platform tennis going in an area where there is so little opportunity? You make the most of every opportunity! The Albany, New York, area is not quite known as a platform tennis hot spot. But since Joan O'Connor entered the game there, things have at least gotten warmer.
If you play in Region I or Region II, you probably have met Joan O'Connor by now. She has been "bitten by the bug" and has a blast traveling from tournament to tournament with a band of like-minded women—to name a few, Kathy Kulig, Tracy Welling, Sharon Edwards and Leslie Haskins. The group is somewhat geographically challenged. They hail from Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and the Albany area, so obviously league partnerships are out of the question. But they meet up at events as often as possible and have attended some of the renowned platform tennis camps in Nantucket and Telluride togeth[...]
Technology has been wonderful to our under-known sport. With the advent of the computer, communication has become more cohesive and streamlined. Archived photos reappear for the world to see. And the history of the game, previously existing in just a few books and deep memories, has been given a new place to live. The virtual Platform Tennis Museum and Hall of Fame has breathed new life into the dusty chronicles and is now welcoming visitors.
The backstory of The Platform Tennis Museum and Hall of Fame Foundation sits on a few shoulders. Bob Brown and Chuck Vasoll were important cheerleaders for a Hall of Fame museum. In 2002, under the guidance of then APTA President John Horine, The Platform Tennis Museum and Hall of Fame Foundation finally became a registered 501 (c ) (3) non-profit that has the mission of capturing the history and the great camaraderie of the game and celebrat[...]
Residence: Bayville, New York
Occupation: Director of Racquet Sports at Nassau Country Club, Glen Cove, NY. I've been teaching platform tennis, tennis, and squash for 34 years.
Years of Service on the APTA Board: Six years as of 2014; previous term 1999-2004
Family: Wife Tonia Mangan holds a few national titles; children Brooke (20), Jack (16), and Caroline (13) all have played at the junior level. My sister, Bobo Delaney, holds many national titles and my niece, Corey Delaney won Junior Nationals a few times. My mother, Nancy, and my uncle, John, were both inducted into the Platform Tennis Hall of Fame. [A bit of a dynasty.]
Years Playing: 46
How did you get started playing? I was introduced to the game by family friends in Short Hills, New Jersey. And I was taught by the best, Hank Irvine.
Contribution to the APTA Board/Contribution to theplatform tennis[...]