Zephyrhills tennis center ready for play

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Lace up the tennis footwear and prep these rackets and balls for play — as a result of the much-hyped Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Heart is now open to the general public.
What started as drawings and plans on paper almost 4 years in the past is lastly a actuality within the kind a $4.9 million athletic complicated located on 8.25 acres of land at 6585 Simons Highway in Zephyrhills.
The complicated loved a mushy opening on Sept. 21. A grand opening celebration is ready for Oct. 17, from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The middle is now open each day, from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The $4.9 million Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Heart sits on greater than 8 acres of land off Simons Highway in Zephyrhills. It options 11 regulation outside tennis courts (9 clay floor, two arduous floor), eight pickleball courts and 4 padel courts, and an almost 8,000-square-foot indoor clubhouse. The northeast nook of the 8-plus-acre property is reserved for an extra 30,000-square-foot indoor multipurpose sports activities complicated, sufficient room to accommodate 4 full-size tennis courts. (Courtesy of David Alvarez, DCA Media Consulting)The power’s outside centerpiece is 11 regulation outside tennis courts (9 clay floor, two arduous floor), eight pickleball courts and 4 padel courts — two of the world’s fastest-growing racquet sports activities.
Hooked up is an almost 8,000-square-foot indoor membership housing cutting-edge well being and wellness facilities that promote coaching and restoration.
There are rooms devoted for cryotherapy, salt remedy, bio/neuro suggestions remedy, therapeutic massage and yoga. There’s additionally a 1,300-square-foot health heart that includes exercise gear, together with recumbent bikes, rowers and ellipticals.
The indoor clubhouse additionally has a full restaurant and cafe operated by Land O’ Lakes-based caterer Mark Vesh.
Although membership-based, visitor customers are inspired to make courtroom leases and partake in different facilities. Stroll-ins are welcome and any particular questions could be answered by the power’s entrance desk supervisor.
Even amid the COVID-19 pandemic, patrons are losing no time getting their recreation on.
As an example, a 30-member coed pickleball group from Zephyrhills reserved courts for a mini occasion on the power’s first open morning.
The complicated is called in honor of Sarah Vande Berg, a former Zephyrhills Excessive College district champion and three-time state qualifier who died in an vehicle accident in South Carolina on the age of 21, in October 2015.
Her father, Todd Vande Berg, is the longtime planning director for Zephyrhills.
All-Star crewThe tennis heart enterprise is a public-private partnership between the Metropolis of Zephyrhills and Pascal Collard, a longtime tennis professional and teacher serving as the power’s CEO.
The municipality owns the state-of-the-art tennis facility, however Collard is chargeable for its day-to-day operations and programming.
Collard has been concerned with the undertaking since October 2017, when his tennis administration agency, Tennis P.R.O. Florida LLC, was employed by town.
Lastly seeing the complicated come to life is a aid for Collard, noting he invested “a variety of money and time and vitality and keenness” along side Zephyrhills over the last a number of years.
Stated Collard, “It’s a lifetime aim and a lifetime dream that’s come true to have the ability to run a spot and actually do one thing that’s touched the neighborhood and that may contact folks from everywhere in the world.”
In operating the power, he brings a various tennis background to the desk.
The almost 8,000-square-foot indoor clubhouse on the tennis facility comprises a health heart, restaurant/café, and rooms devoted for cryotherapy, salt remedy, bio/neuro suggestions remedy, therapeutic massage and yoga, amongst different frills.Collard beforehand served as tennis director at Saddlebrook in Wesley Chapel and The Merion Cricket Membership in Haverford, Pennsylvania. His private coaching consists of working with a number of extensively identified tennis professionals, together with Younes El Aynaoui and Martin Verkerk, each of whom coincidentally ranked as excessive as No. 14 within the ATP Tour rankings again in 2003.
Lots of the different 36 complete staffers on the Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Heart equally deliver aboard respectable pedigrees.
The power’s tennis director is Rene Moller, a former touring professional director at Saddlebrook Tennis Academy who’s been a full-time coach to John Isner, the highest-ranked American males’s tennis participant, in addition to Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz, who’s ranked No. 31 on the earth.
One other notable tennis teacher is Mika Todo, a former skilled WTA worldwide tennis participant from Japan who’s been working as a tennis coach for the previous 20 years, and efficiently educated junior gamers who gained the title within the All-Japan Junior U12 and U14 match.
Additionally, former NFL defensive lineman Mel Williams will function a health coach and specialist in tennis footwork and plyometrics. He performed for the New Orleans Saints, the Washington Redskins, the San Francisco 49ers and the Miami Dolphins within the early 2000s.
A bunch for professional tournamentsThe facility is starting to ship on its promise as a tourism driver for East Pasco, by drawing big-ticket nationwide and worldwide occasions.
Collard mentioned the complicated will host a sanctioned skilled girls’s match in late January that’ll provide a $25,000 grand prize for the winner and factors in world rankings. The occasion is anticipated to attract 32 gamers representing quite a lot of totally different international locations and nationalities.
A corresponding males’s tennis match organized by retired skilled Johan Kriek and sanctioned by the Worldwide Tennis Federation is also within the works, Collard mentioned. Kriek gained 14 skilled singles and eight doubles titles, rating as excessive as seventh on the earth within the Eighties. “It’s going to be very spectacular and thrilling,” Collard mentioned of the forthcoming occasions.
A neighborhood hangoutAt a hard-hat tour again in June, Collard defined his visioning for the complicated is to change into a neighborhood hangout of types, the place customers do greater than merely play tennis with associates then depart and go about their day.
Pickleball is likely one of the hottest sports activities amongst seniors. Eight brand-new courts are devoted for that exercise on the Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Heart.“It began with tennis, however it now grew to become a vacation spot,” mentioned Collard. “Mainly, the idea right here is, ‘I’m not doing one hour of sport and I’m going dwelling. I’m coming right here to play tennis, then possibly I do a cryotherapy session after which possibly I’m going eat right here as a result of there’s a full restaurant.’ You possibly can deliver your total household…so it’s actually distinctive.”
In coming years, the power might increase even additional. The northeast nook of the 8-plus-acre property is reserved for a 30,000-square-foot indoor multipurpose sports activities complicated, sufficient room to accommodate one other 4 full-size tennis courts. Nevertheless, the addition had a setback when Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis vetoed a $1 million appropriation for the undertaking from the state’s funds.
In opening amid ongoing coronavirus considerations, the power is adhering to prescribed well being and security precautions, Collard defined.
Masks are required contained in the clubhouse, however not whereas enjoying outside racquet sports activities.
Sarah Vande Berg Tennis & Wellness Heart CEO Pascal CollardStaffers even have put in about 30 umbrella tables in a roomy outside house for patrons to eat, drink, calm down and watch play, in a socially distanced method.
There are additionally plans to put in a temperature screening gate earlier than coming into the constructing within the coming week, in partnership with AdventHealth.
Collard summed up the numerous security measures: “We have now sanitizer in all places. We have now masks for everyone.”
As for subsequent month’s grand opening, Collard guarantees a “huge, huge wow issue.”
Collard added: “We have now a variety of surprises. It’s going to be fairly, fairly superb what’s going to occur proper there.”
Between every now and then, guests additionally might discover spruced-up landscaping on the property.
Collard famous that landscaping is all the time put in final.
For extra data, name (813) 361-6660, e-mail , or go to SVBtenniscenter.com.
Revealed September 23, 2020
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