Bemidji Summer Tennis Program In Full Swing
The high school tennis season is over, but that doesn’t mean that the courts in Bemidji are going unused. Bemidji’s summer tennis program is thriving and attracting kids of all ages to the sport. Kids as young as first-graders and as old as high schoolers take part in the program in separate age groups. It brings together veterans of the game and first-timers just starting out.
That’s one of my favorite things about the program,” says Kyle Fodness, the director of Bemidji Youth Tennis. “We have people out here on some of these courts who have been in tennis…since they were just tiny second-graders, and we’ve had kids in the program who are just starting their first year.”
The backbone of the program is the volunteer coaches, many of whom began in the program and give back to teach kids the sport that they love.
“They’re a great group of kids,” says Hannah Nelson, a volunteer coach. “They show up and they’re excited to be here at tennis and I’m excited to be helping them because I started out here.”
“Tennis is one of those sports that’s awesome because you can play it your whole life,” says Fodness. “So we’re always very excited when kids come out. They say ‘I don’t really know if I’ll like this’ or ‘I don’t even know if I’m that good at it, but I want to try it.’ And often those are the kids who have some of the best experiences out here, so it’s fun to see that.”
Even if you don’t pick up a new lifelong hobby, the coaching staff works hard to make it a fun environment for all involved.
“All the coaches here are really welcoming, and they make you feel that you’re a part of it,” says Nelson. “It’s a really fun experience.”
For more information and to register for The Lumberjack Open, you can visit bemidjitennis.com.