Serve A Little Love to Our Guests
By Kelly Thompson
ACVB Communications Director
Abilene is rolling out the welcome mat for a dizzying number of groups and events the next two weeks, and we invite everyone to make our guests feel at home. Our city will host executives and plumbing inspectors, football and baseball players, golfers and disc-golfers, rodeo champions, animal lovers and storybook lovers.
The biggest group to hit town will be a thousand plus young tennis players. These aren’t just any junior athletes, though. They’re the best in our great state. Abilene is the proud host city for the Texas Slam Section Championships, the largest junior tennis tournament in the nation. The competition starts Saturday and runs through June 17.
The players and their supporters will bring about 2700 people to town – along with an estimated $1.3 million in direct spending. They’ll sleep in our hotels, dine in our restaurants, celebrate wins and mourn losses. Let’s show them a memorable time. Game On.
We hope everyone will join us to display West Texas hospitality. If you’ve got a sign in front of your business, post a greeting to the athletes. Show off those friendly faces that make us famous. It’s good for business!
The ACVB has distributed welcome buttons for customer service staff to wear at hotels and attractions. We’ve printed banners and directional signage; volunteers have fixed up tennis courts, secured trash cans, chairs, tents, tables and benches, and a thousand other details.
You can help, too. Smile at strangers. Give directions when you see a lost soul. Give them your best customer service. Even better, catch a match at one of the 100 courts throughout town. The public is invited, and admission is free. The helpful folks at Rose Park Tennis Center, 325-676-6292, can tell you where to find the best action each day. Check out the website, too, for a schedule, players of the day and live stream.
The Abilene Tennis Associaton, City of Abilene, ACVB and many generous sports lovers have shared time and treasure to put on this event. The Abilene Tennis Association folks tell us this exciting tournament inspires more Abilene people to embrace tennis, a healthy habit for life. That’s one of several reasons ATA snagged the title sponsorship. Check out the list, and you’ll spot many familiar names. Join us to thank these visionary movers and shakers. Their support makes things happen.
Cheer for these hometown players (from left to right): Lane Adkins, Analeah Elias, Ruth Hill, Kaitlyn Hathorn, Davyn Williford, Kaitlyn Strain and Trevor Short
Several local athletes are among 128 who will vie for a slot in the Slam at the Championship Masters matches on Saturday, June 9, a daylong competition that will determine four top players in each division to progress to the Slam. Root for these local young athletes: Kate Delgado and Derstin (Stealey) Crousen; Carly Bontke; McKenna Bryan, Taja Lawrence and Rachel Tebow; and Carson Cole.
Get outside,watch some great tennis, and know that you’re not only supporting an outstanding athlete, you’re supporting your town. Love it.
TagsTourism, Events, Tennis, The Texas Slam, Abilene Welcomes