“THE OJAI” SERVES THE YOUTH

A major objective of each year’s Ojai tennis tournament, hosted by the Ojai Valley Tennis Club (OVTC), is to raise funds to conduct and support various programs that introduce tennis to elementary school students, and support the development of young tennis players in the Ojai Valley. This goal is accomplished through the OVTC’s Youth Tennis Committee, which solicits additional funding and manages the program.

The all-volunteer OVTC Youth Tennis Committee works with the Ojai Unified School District, the City of Ojai Recreation Department, and several local teaching pros to introduce, develop, and popularize tennis for children of all ages.

Instruction is initiated in elementary schools by experienced volunteers to introduce basic skills and show how much fun the game is.  This instruction is based on the Quick Start, now called the Ten and Under program developed by the USTA. Several of our volunteers have attended training sessions to allow for effective and fun instruction. The Quick Start is led by Philippe Gache, and funding is provided mostly by the Ojai Recreation Department. This year like the last two years we will have a QuickStart tournament on Thursday before the barbeque.

In addition, funding is provided by the OVTC to the Ojai Recreation Department to support the youth tennis programs, organized by Rick Thompson, the City tennis professional, to teach tennis at the beginner and advanced levels, conduct a summer program, and an after-school tennis league for youngsters to taste competition for the first time and to learn the values of teamwork and good sportsmanship.

Awards are presented to worthy youngsters to participate in a number of tennis clinics, summer camps, and individual professional tennis instruction for further specialized training, development and competition. These awards are presented to Ojai Valley youth, selected by the Youth Tennis Committee, based upon a variety of factors; such as sportsmanship, motivation, demonstrated talent, potential to advance in competition, and financial need. Several of the recipients of these awards in the past will be playing in THE OJAI this year or have gone on to compete at the college level.

A number of these special sportsmanship awards and summer tennis camp opportunities, which are all donated by Ojai tennis coaches, are presented at the traditional barbecue, that this year will take place on Thursday during THE OJAI Tournament to boys and girls who have participated in the various youth tennis programs.

The Youth Tennis Committee also organizes and hosts the High Performance Tennis Clinic, utilizing professional coaches to develop competitive strategies and skills of invited top-ranked junior players in the region. It supports World Team Tennis, The Wilson youth tennis clinic, Two local Ventura County Jr. Tennis tournaments, Local school tennis programs, The Tennis Marathon, organized by the Ojai Youth Foundation, and The Ojai Day.

In December of 2012 the second annual Ojai Holiday Tennis Challenge was completed with great success. The OVTC is planning to make this event a new tradition in Ojai, already considering the 3rd annual Ojai Holiday Tennis Challenge toward the end of 2013.

These programs for our youth are made possible by the generous contributions of sponsors and citizens of the community. Sponsors such as Mike Taggart (a local tennis fan) and THE OJAI Tournament contribute about $25,000 per year. The quality of the programs and success of reaching and influencing more kids is dependent, however, on private donations. Since this is an all-volunteer, non-profit organization, every penny donated goes directly to benefit the youth.

If you would like to help develop character and enrich the lives of our youth to combat juvenile delinquency, you can make a tax-deductible contribution to support the Youth Tennis program. Please send your check payable to: OVTC Youth Tennis and send it to:

OVTC
P.O. Box 482
Ojai, CA 93024

For further information, contact Jakob Vos

OVTC Youth Tennis – Major Sponsors

Mike Taggart

OVTC Youth Tennis – Scholarship Contributors

Weil Tennis Academy

Weil Tennis Academy
409 South Fox Street
Ojai, CA 93023
(805) 646-7213

Ryan Gaston of the Ojai Valley Athletic Club

Ojai Valley Athletic Club
409 South Fox Street
Ojai, CA 93023
(805) 646-7213

Rick Thompson of the Ojai Recreation Department

City of Ojai Recreation Department
510 Park Road
Ojai, CA 93023
(805) 646-1872

Stacy Margolin Potter

(805) 646-0382
www.hikingojai.com

Tom Rohrbacher
of the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
905 Country Club Road
Ojai, CA 93023
(805) 646-1111

Dimitar Yazadzhiev
DIMITAR Tennis Academy and Santa Barbara School of Tennis
www.DimitarTennis.com

Oceanside School Of Tennis
633 E Cabrillo Blvd.
Santa Barbara, CA, 93103
(805) 884-8521 Office
(805) 746-3644 Cell