Presidents Letter July, 2021

July 2021 President’s Letter


There is a lot going on this month in Kentucky tennis!  From juniors to professionals, the month of July has something for all ages and abilities.  The USTA Kentucky staff and volunteers were particularly busy this month hosting the Creason junior tournament in Louisville and the 40 and over Adult League State Championships and Junior Team Tennis State Championships in Lexington.  The Lexington Challenger tournament returns the last week of July.


Despite no longer being the state qualifier, the Creason tournament saw a 9% increase in participants compared to last year. The Adult 40 and over League State Championship saw a 10% increase in participants compared to 2019.  The Junior Team Tennis State Championships had a 42% increase in participants compared to 2020.  It is wonderful to see the increased play at our championships!  Please join me in extending a pat on the back to all of our staff and tournament volunteers, but especially Bryan Hash and Kathy Klein for their efforts as tournament directors. 


It is exciting to welcome professional tennis back to Kentucky. The Lexington Challenger will be held July 25-August 1 at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex at the University of Kentucky.  It will be a men’s tournament only this year and due to COVID restrictions, no daily general admission tickets will be sold.  However, you can still get in to watch some great tennis by purchasing a week-long pass or serving as a volunteer.  For more information please contact, Vicki Jenkins, or volunteer registration.  Kudos to Brooks Lundy for all of her hard work as tournament director!


The USTA Southern Summer meeting was held in Bentonville, Arkansas and marked the first in person meeting for Southern since January of 2020.  I had the pleasure of giving an update on Kentucky tennis and highlighted the on-court banner campaign “Lode the Code” developed by our Manager of Marketing and Communications, Kim Lonnemann.  The signs and banners have been placed at public park courts around the state to provide information to new and returning players by loading the QR code.  The idea has been replicated by USTA Southern and USTA National has shown interest.  The meeting was attended by USTA President Mike McNulty and USTA CEO and Executive Director Michael Dowse.  Dowse discussed the bad, the good and the future.  He admitted and took ownership for the Serve Tennis digital launch failure. He believed that it was incredible that the 2020 U.S. Open was played at all given all of the pandemic restrictions.  At this time, the 2021 U.S. Open is anticipating 100% capacity for fans.  It is imperative for the future of the USTA that the Serve Tennis digital platform be corrected and he is taking steps to make that happen. 


I would like to congratulate all of our Adult League State Champions and Junior Team Tennis State Champions and wish them well as they move on to represent Kentucky in the Southern Sectionals. Go Kentucky!  


At Your Service,

Mike Eden. USTA KY President