Idle Hour Tennis
Issue No. 4, 30 September 2012
As your Board of Directors, we are pleased that club members have had such a rewarding summer of playing tennis and enjoying our social functions. We hope that the weather continues to be kind and provides us many opportunities for enjoyable hours of tennis on Idle Hour's courts. A number of important developments this summer are recounted in this Newsletter, which we use to keep you informed and current.
As always, you can contact us at email@example.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions. We are always looking for volunteers to help out with our social events and tennis activities.
Idle Hour Tennis Board of Directors
There seems to be a common misconception that it's hard to find volunteers and members to run for the Board. My experience contradicts that opinion.
For a number of years, I have asked members to serve on our Board and others to participate in a wide variety of projects. I continue to be impressed with the generosity and willingness of our members to be involved.
When looking for prospective candidates for Board positions, I look for club members who are enthusiastic, talented, and creative team players. We have an outstanding Board, which works hard and makes difficult decisions, keeping in mind the goals of improving our club and meeting the needs of our membership.
We are fortunate to have so many dedicated volunteers who truly merit our appreciation.
A special thanks is due to our in-house photographers, Paul Cohen and Charlie Fiore, who have provided us with a visual history of happenings at the club.
We must also give kudos to Joe Armao who alerted us to the need to rebuild the berm along Darby Creek. We have applied to Upper Darby Township for the approval to repair an eroded portion of the berm. When the berm is rebuilt to its original size, it will prevent minor flooding of the courts.
Dick Gillespie suggested we use some of the hard courts to introduce the game of Pickle Ball. With the help of Betsey Cheesman and Suzi Paulin, we had several introductory Pickle Ball activities.
Don Evons made a beautiful wood and glass flag case to display the American Flag which flew over the nation's capital in commemoration of our club's Centennial Celebration..
Jack Higgins, although no longer a Board member, continues to provide our Board with his support and new ideas.
These are just a few of the many members who are outstanding volunteers.
I am grateful to all those who serve on the Board and to our volunteers who have been so generous with their time and talents to maintain and to improve our club.
Some people say that the main attractions of Idle Hour are its courts, but our members and their contributions are what make this club a vital and successful community.
We need everyone to recruit new members, since our current numbers are down from 2011. The maximum membership is 525. We are a little over 40 members short of that number. The dues from new members help pay for timely improvements to our facilities. We know that the best marketers of IHTC are our members. Did you know that you can get a one-time $25 credit towards next year's dues as the primary sponsor of a new senior member? The full details are on our website. Click on "Membership Application" and scroll down.
Our website is : http://www.idlehourtennis.com
Idle Hour Needs You!
Sunday, October 21, 2012 at
4 p.m. in our clubhouse
With the onset of fall, we have to prepare for our annual meeting and what you, our club members, will decide there about the questions and problems our club faces. If you value the advantages and privileges of membership, then come to the meeting and show your genuine interest in our club.
We hope to see as many of you there as possible.
- Sandwiches, alcoholic beverages, and desserts
- Treasurer's Report, Proposed 2013 budget and dues increase
- Proposed revisions of the By-laws
- Property Committee report on proposals for preserving the courts
- Elections of the club Secretary and five new Directors
Rules, Regulations, By-laws Committee
In spite of the flood waters that have inundated our club over the past century, the gold in the "Golden Rule" is not tarnished. Fair play, good sportsmanship, social responsibility, common courtesy, and proper decorum have endured as hallmarks of Idle Hour Tennis Club.
(Revisions are underlined below.)
Idle Hour Tennis Club Rules and Regulations
Revised 10 July 2012
A. Regular play
Page 1, Paragraph 1.
When you and your entire group are ready to play, and there is an available court, print your name and your starting time on the big blackboard under the appropriate court number--then you may all enter the court together. Be mindful and courteous to other players. Enter through the gate closest to the court you selected. If there are players already playing on adjacent courts, don't enter your court until the adjacent-court players have finished playing their points.
B. Rules that apply when people are waiting
(Highlighted sentences deleted)
Page 1, Item 2.
Juniors may be bumped immediately unless playing with a senior member.
B. Rules that apply when people are waiting
Page 1, Item 4.
When all courts are filled, play is limited to one hour for doubles and 45 minutes for singles. Juniors must give way to seniors.
Page 4, Paragraph 3.
Har-Tru courts will be closed for watering at a time designated by the manager and the times will be posted. If you are bumped because of watering, and you do not continue to play elsewhere,you may go back on the same court when watering is completed. When the watering is completed, you may continue to play for only the balance of the time remaining before you were bumped. If because of watering, you choose to move to another available court, write your name and your new starting time on the big blackboard under the appropriate court number and erase your name and starting time from the court number you are vacating.
Emilio Cortez, Committee Chair
Charlie Fiore, long-time member, unofficial tennis grand sire of the club, who helps on the courts during tournaments, officiates even in 90 degree heat, takes photos of us at important anniversaries and meetings, encourages the disenchanted, provides pointers to novices and experts, has now donated his 42 inch flat screen TV to the club.
Those who have had the pleasure of watching the end of Phillies and Eagles games after a few sets of tennis, and unwind before treking home, especially the ones who had trouble reading the scores on the old TV, express their thanks to Charlie.
Beware of Breaking Branches
Several weeks ago a falling tree branch smashed through a parked car's windshield, causing major damage. Fortunately, no one was injured.
Cars parked along the fence with the posted "No Parking" signs are the prime targets of errant tree branches. We suggest you park elsewhere, unless you want to test the effectiveness of your insurance company.
In insurance jargon, damage caused by a fallen tree branch is "an act of nature." Therefore, your comprehensive coverage will guarantee payment for such damages. To avoid a car bashing, be mindful of appropriate parking spots, and avoid wayward tree branches.
Insurance Committee, Chair
Emma, Zdenka and I want to
thank the membership for a busy and fun-filled season. The courts were active at all hours of
operation throughout the summer. We had a fantastic number of people signing up for club activities, such as club tournaments and Saturday Mixed Doubles.
Although mother nature rained out our Labor Day Barbeque, the Memorial Day and Independence Day Barbeques were well attended. Everyone ate heartily and seemed to have fun just hanging out on the porch with old and new friends.
We are looking forward to next season. We also want to thank our Board of Directors for a job well done.
Cleaning up the Tarps
Anyone who has played on courts one or two recently must have noticed that the first two tarps for the courts have arrived, and are waiting to be deployed in the event of a flood. After the tarps arrived and were spread out to assess how they fit, we decided that storing them along the backs of courts one and two would allow for a quick rollout, and require less manpower than if they were stored in the upper parking lot.
With the tarps in place, rolled up along the center fence, each tarp can be spread out in less than ten minutes by a crew of five. It takes another few minutes to tie them to the fence posts and to each other. After the first time they are spread out, the nylon ties will remain attached to the tarps.
Several members have asked how the tarps will be cleaned of mud and debris, who will do the cleaning, and how much will the cleaning cost.
Cleaning the tarps
When the flood ends, the water will be drained from the courts leaving mud, twigs, leaves and maybe logs behind. In a short time, the courts will dry permitting the cleanup work to begin. The initial cleanup of the large debris will require labor with brooms, shovels, and wheelbarrows. Since the work will be done on top of the Har-Tru surface, care must be taken not to damage the surface. Sharp edged tools will not be used. The cleanup of the mud can be performed using several techniques. We have investigated using golf-cart sized powered sweepers with rotary brushes to dislodge the dried mud. We will need to use brushes which will not damage the tarp material. This machine powered approach will be augmented by hand brooms, shovels, leaf blowers, and wheelbarrows.
The final cleanup may be done using water to wash off as much of the residual mud as possible. Leaf blowers, squeegees, and nature will do a final drying before the tarps are refolded.
The the southern halves of the tarps, covering courts one through seven, will be folded first to cover their northern halves. If the now exposed bottom surfaces are wet they will be dried as above, before the next folds are made, and they are rolled up against the middle fence. The northern halves of the tarps will be folded onto the southern halves for courts eight through fourteen.
If the tarps provide protection as planned, the only Har-Tru that will need further cleanup will be along the outer edges along the fences and where the tarps were tied to each other. After this, the nets can be attached and we can begin to play.
Manpower will be needed before the flood to deploy the tarps and to secure them to the fences and to each other. A conservative estimate is that a crew of five can fully deploy two tarps in half an hour. We now have two tarps and will have four by the end of the year. Eventually we hope to have a full complement of fourteen tarps. IHTC is compiling a list of potential volunteers who will be available to spread the tarps.
Manpower will also be needed after the flood to perform the cleanup as described above. The number of workers will be dictated by the severity of the flood. If significant debris is deposited as happened during Hurricane Irene, a contractor may have to be called to remove the large debris. The remainder of the cleanup work could be done by a combination of contractors and volunteers. After Hurricane Irene, the major portion of the work was performed by Sports Builder, Inc., who currently prepare the courts for our season openings and also do the closing work. They are under contract to have 4 courts open within ten days after a flood, weather permitting. If a sweeper/cleaner is leased, it will be transported to and removed from the club by the leaser.
Since the planned work with the tarps has not been implemented yet, the projected costs are estimates. The worst case was the $25,000 cost incurred after Hurricane Irene when no tarps were used. This cost paid for work to clean up the mud and debris and work to remediate the Har-Tru surface. The remediation work includes supplying several tons of new Har-Tru.
We have estimated that with a full deployment of fourteen tarps, the cleanup costs will be significantly less, coming in at about $6,000. Using the tarps. the work will primarily consist of clean-up and involve little court surface remediation. Much less new Har-Tru will be needed. With little actual court remediation the courts can be available much sooner.
Lower costs will be incurred if a smaller number of tarps are used at the time of the next flood.
Nominating Committee Report
As of 17 September, the following members declared their candidacy for the Board. The slate of candidates is subject to change if new candidates come forward.
Candidates for Secretary:
Audrey Reinsel, club member for 34 years
o Experience: 4 years on IHTC Board; 2 years as
Secretary. Former Secretary of the
Interboro Education Association (2 years).
o Vocation: Biology teacher.
Olga Thornton, club member for 21 years
o Experience: First Vice President, Aronimink Swim
Club; Vice-President and former Recording Secretary,
Darby Creek Valley Association;
o Vocation: Retired with 30 years in health care
management positions, including Unit Supervisor,
Director of Nursing, Assistant Administrator (Skilled
Facility), Director of Case Management (Independence
Blue Cross), VP of Program Development and Senior
VP and Compliance Officer (TGM Health).
Candidates for Director
Bill Barton, club member for 3 years
o Experience: Member of the Board, Hawks Nest
Condominium Association in Nags Head, NC
o Interests: Property Committee
o Vocation: Civil Engineer P.E.
Joy Effron, club member for 3 years
o Experience: Chair of the Social Committee, IHTC;
Manufacturing and retail market sales representative
o Vocation: Reading tutor in Philadelphia School District
o Professional Organizer for "Joy In Your Space, LLC," a business she and her daughter started five years ago.
Terry Irwin, club member for 5 years
o Interests: Landscaping and Beautification
o Skills: Organization, and maintenance
o Vocation: Gym Teacher
Bill Kupprion (member in 1975 and 2010)
o Experience: President, Swarthmore Tennis Club;
President, Strath Haven All Sports Boosters;
Chairman, Central Athletic League Tennis
o Interests: Project development, leadership
o Skills: Organization, maintenance, planning
John Parke, club member for 24 years
o Interests: Membership, Property Committees o Skills: Sales, ground improvement, social events
o Vocation: Commercial and industrial sales
Centennial History Books
Complimentary copies of The History of Idle Hour Tennis Club... are available in the Proshop.The on-line version is on the club's website: www. idlehourtennis.com Click on "The History of Idle Hour Tennis Club." Whether you have been a member for many decades and have vivid memories of the club's earlier years, or you are a new club member, you will enjoy the pictures, stories, and the finely crafted work of its authors.
There are still many copies available, so be sure to pick one up. You won't regret it. It is as much a pleasure reading this book as it is playing tennis with its contributors.
Tennis started out as a game of ladies and gentlemen. Even though the meaning of these words has been eroded in the past decades, "ladies and gentlemen" still imply propriety of behavior, which requires self-control. The original meaning, sometimes forgotten, was to make it easier for people to cooperate and to enjoy each other's company.
In tennis, a cordial game for pleasure, the momentary frustrations of losing a point, a game, or a set must not cast a shadow over the fundamental meaning of "ladies and gentlemen."
Those who remember
The early tennis players begin to see the sun at eight in the morning, while their counterparts who play after work lose light from six o'clock on. Shadows cover court one after five, and the falling leaves scatter over court seven. Brown leaves, like fallen, giant butterflies litter the back seven. But in the heat of the day, scrappy butterflies, lively as ever, land in the service court. Their brown, red and pink wings clap, as if in mirth at your efforts to hit the ball.
The strenuous, sweat-drenched days of the hot summer are mitigated, and tired players take their showers less drained, more energetic, some not as lethargic after a few sets of doubles as before.
The competitive idleness of tennis fills our days and the physical rewards and social life of our club spill from the porch into restaurants, dinner invitations, telephone chats and e-mail correspondence.
We ask Providence for good weather, and for the continuing joys of what we hope is a life-prolonging idleness.
In memory of recent and past Idle Hour members and their loved ones.
Lois Caughey, Bob Caughey's wife
David Ginsberg, Jeannie Wechsler-Ginsberg's husband
Alan Witkin, Sarah Witkin's husband
May they rest in peace.