Ladies answer skeptics with midweek milestone
WHEN a group of like-minded tennis enthusiasts had a brain storm in 1964 to start a mid-week ladies tennis competition, many negative comments were voiced that the venture would "never succeed."
The idea has proved the skeptics wrong as the group has proved the test of time.
A reunion to celebrate 50 years of the competition will be held next month.
The fixtures began with a vision from local social tennis enthusiast Lu Little. She and her band of willing helpers held a meeting to discuss the possibility and the fixture was born.
Little was the first president, Olga McGrath the secretary, Audrey Brennan became the assistant secretary and Ailsa Reis was appointed treasurer.
The committee members were Dorothy Wake and Erin Manson.
From small beginnings, numbers grew quickly, leading to this year's milestone.
When a competition runs for this length of time a lot happens.
The ladies have been saddened when some members have passed away, left the fixtures due to age or ill health, returned to workforce or had work transfers or been too busy with families.
However, the fixture continues to run every Thursday at the George Alder Centre.
Del Rowlings was a winner in one of the fixture teams in 1964/65. She still plays as the "larrikin" secretary of the club. Irene Rees is now the patron of the group and fills in occasionally when asked.
This is a great feat for these two amazing stalwarts - 50 years of involvement as players and committee members.
The club has been financially viable on its own since the inception, despite meagre beginnings when in 1966 it started with a credit balance of $36.28.
Volunteers have played a huge part in the success of the club. They are the backbone of any organisation, especially this one.
Tennis has always been a sport where friendships are forged and easily rekindled when players meet over the years.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary many past players have been notified. They will join with present players and invited guests at a celebration dinner at end of November in the RSL Coral Room.
Tickets need to be booked ASAP with Del Rowlings on 3281 3603 to secure your seat for this occasion.
Lots of laughter, reminiscing and catch-up conversation will be the order of the day.