The United States Tennis Association (USTA) announced this fall that Hastings’ Sadie Reiners -- the president and treasurer of the Hastings Tennis Association -- is the recipient of USTA’s 2020 Janet Louer Junior Team Tennis Organizer of the Year.
Junior Team Tennis “brings together boys and girls ages 6-18 for competition with a focus on unity, sportsmanship and working together to achieve success” according to the USTA’s press release. The award “is presented to an individual who has successfully implemented and administered JTT in their community, generated the participation of Community Tennis Associations and created interest through local promotions.”
Reiners said that she knew she had been nominated for the award by the USTA Northern section, of which Hastings is a part of.
“I was (surprised), this is not my full-time gig, I was in the midst of finishing up our audit, doing projections, so it was like ‘ok thanks’ but then after the fact I’m like cool,” Reiners said about when she found out over the phone that she had won the award. “Then when I got the letter I was like ‘wait a minute, this is the national, not the section award’.”
“I don’t know if everybody else knows because I haven’t really promoted it too much, but I got a call from the national office to congratulate me and then they sent me a letter,” she added. “Their annual awards banquet is March in Orlando, so I get a trip paid to Orlando.”
She said she was surprised because it’s usually people from larger tennis organizations who receive the award, but credits Hastings’ junior tennis teams for helping her win.
“I think what our teams are really known for, we’re gracious winners and we’re gracious losers,” Reiners said. “We consistently get good sportsmanship awards, one of our players, male or female, gets recognized regularly for good sportsmanship, even when we went to nationals. The team was (also) recognized.”
Reiners has been with HTA since the beginning and continues to be instrumental in their expanded programming. One new program that she said HTA hopes to continue to develop and expand is their Advantage You: A Unique Camp Experience.
Advantage You is a week-long, day camp in the summer for kids entering fourth-eighth grades. It integrates tennis, literacy, wellness and community. Thanks to a grant from the United States Tennis Foundation, the program is completely free and tennis rackets are provided. It’s inaugural session was this past summer.
“We hope to build upon the success of this and continue to offer it,” Reiners said of Advantage You.