Team Tennis a big hit at annual Steiness Tennis Festival

Mark Wong

In mid-October over the course of two days, 20+ members of the SBRTA played some fun tennis in the Steiness Tennis Festival. This is the third year of this annual tennis festival event, and this year it was renamed the Steiness Tennis Festival in recognition and in honor of Helge Steiness, the founding SBRTA president who presided in the 2012 and 2013 years. Sadly, Helge passed away late last year. His wife Krista and immediate family were present at the Festival, and they received many heartfelt greetings and a special tribute on behalf of the SBRTA.

The festival event format was changed this year. Unlike past events where everyone was playing essentially for themselves, this year’s festival had a team tennis format, which everyone seemed to enjoy. It created great camaraderie, ongoing fan involvement, rooting, hooting and cheering, and all around good times for both players and fans alike.

Lutz Paper captained the “Rattlers” (in blue T shirts) and Janice Neal captained the “Coyotes” (in white T shirts). Both teams were comprised of an even number of skilled players drawn from the same pool of participating members to ensure both teams were equal. A skill level categorized each match so that both teams put forth players at that level to make the matches competitive. Alas, after two days under sunny skies, the Coyotes won. Players and fans agreed this format provided great fun and entertainment for all, and a committee is already being formed to make next year’s event even more exciting.

If you enjoy the game of tennis and want to meet others in an enjoyable, social setting, then become a member of the SBRTA now. SBRTA members who pay the $25 dues for 2015 will enjoy weekly-organized play and opportunities to participate in social, competitive and learning sessions. To sign up or for further information on the SBRTA, please log on to: or contact Tom Kanitz, SBRTA president, at [email protected].

Photos courtesy of Ken Gorman.