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Take a swing at tennis May 11

A number of years ago the Rosemount Park and Recreation department, the Rosemount Area Athletic Association tennis program and the boys high school tennis team decided to partner to host an annual community tennis block party. The goal was to attract more people of all ages to the sport of tennis.

Each year the event has grown, and proof of its success can be seen in the numbers of kids and adults signing up to participate in area tennis programs.

"We've had a lot of success building the tennis program," said Mike Hatlen, a tennis parent and an active volunteer with RAAA.

We have more than 100 in-house players. When we started we had 30 or 40."

This year's tennis block party will take place from 10 a.m. to noon May 11 at the high school courts, 3335 142nd St. W.

Tennis can be played from youth well into the silver years. Parks supervisor Lisa Maurer said among the three organizations people of all ages can find a tennis program for them. The tennis block party will highlight the opportunities available for people of all ages.

The city offers beginning tennis lessons to children and adults. This is the first summer adult lessons will be available. Maurer said the city has partnered with Independent School District 196 to make it possible to offer adult lessons.

The Rosemount Area Athletic Association offers competitive programs including in-house and traveling tennis teams. Hatlen said they try to offer opportunities to players of different skill levels.

To get kids started on the path to success, Hatlen said, the block party introduces young players to the USTA QuickStart Tennis program. During the block party, kids will have the opportunity to take part in some drills and activities. The activities will be led by the Rosemount High School boys tennis team.

Rosemount High School coach Dana Beck said the annual block party helps build Rosemount's tennis program. She said getting kids playing at a younger age helps strengthen the high school program down the road.

Generally the tennis block party draws several hundred people. Beck said her players enjoy the opportunity to interact with the public and promote the sport of tennis.

The Rosemount Tennis Block Party is free. For more information visit the city's website at

Emily Zimmer
Emily Zimmer has worked as a staff writer for the Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. She has a degree in journalism from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Outside of work, Emily enjoys running, reading and gardening. You can follow Emily's gardening adventures at the Areavoices blog East of Weedin'
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