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Tennis Camps to Provide Additional Recreational Options for Youth

March 25, 2009 – As part of an ongoing effort of the Tennis in the Parks and Schools initiative, First lady Cecile de Jongh has announced the launch of after-school tennis camps on St. Thomas and St. Croix. On the heels of the successful December 2008 Recreational Coaches Tennis Workshops in both districts, de Jongh has again teamed up with the departments of Education and Housing, Parks and Recreation to provide additional recreational options for Virgin Islands youth, according to a press release from the Office of the Governor.
"This program offers recreational alternatives to children who may be interested in learning a new sport, and guides those who wish to be part of an exciting and interactive after-school program. Participants who register in advance will receive on-court training from some of the territory's best tennis players, including professionals and certified coaches. It is our hope that we inspire children throughout the territory to consider tennis as one of the many recreational outlets available after school," de Jongh said.
The Tennis in the Parks and Schools committee is chaired by Cecile de Jongh and includes Commissioner St. Claire Williams, Kirby Callendar and Stanley Smith from the Department of Housing, Parks and Recreation; William McComb, Robert Nuscher and Bruce Wray of the VI Tennis Association; Lucille Hobson, Mark Daniel, and Arthur Solomon from the Department of Education; George Lewis of VITEMA and the St. Thomas Yacht Club; Louis B. Taylor from the St. Thomas Racquet Club; Ronald Schjang, Karl Knight and Rebecca Smock from the executive staff for the Office of the Governor.
The six-week, after-school tennis camps on St. Thomas and St. Croix are geared towards children ages 7-12. Registration for the on-court sessions is free. The camps will kick-off on Monday, March 30, and will convene on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 3:30-4:30 p.m., at the D.C. Canegata Tennis Courts on St. Croix and at the Alvin McBean Complex tennis courts on St. Thomas.
Certified coaches from the Virgin Islands Tennis Association and tennis professionals will teach camp participants the fundamentals of tennis, including basic skills, as well as lessons for beginners on proper equipment, footwork, weight-control, strokes, court position, and proper attire. All participants who attended the First Lady's December 2008 workshop or the VI Tennis Association's workshop in March 2008 were certified with the US Tennis Association to teach tennis fundamentals to children. These individuals will provide assistance during the camp sessions.
For more information on the after-school tennis camps, contact Alvin Burke at the Department of Housing, Parks and Recreation on St. Croix at 773-0160 or Kirby Callendar at the Department of Housing, Parks and Recreation on St. Thomas at 774-0255.

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