One of 25 Tennis Facilities from Across the Country Honored for Excellence
(TAMPA, Fla.) – The United States Tennis Association announced that the Tejas Pradip Patel HCC Tennis Center is one of 25 winners in the USTA’s annual Outstanding Facility Awards program. Located on the Hillsborough Community College Dale Mabry Campus, this award recognizes excellence in the construction and/or renovation of tennis facilities throughout the country.
“Receiving the USTA Outstanding Facility Award was one of the happiest and most gratifying moments of my life,” Tennis Center manager Chris Nyholm said. “Over the past three years, we’ve worked so hard as a staff to build relationships within the community and to improve the facilities, courts, programming and overall business operations. To receive that type of recognition from the USTA has really made all the hard work worth it.”
Tejas Pradip Patel HCC Tennis Center’s mission is to break down the barriers and spread the love of tennis to everyone – all ages, skill levels and backgrounds – in the Tampa community. The facility is utilized by top ATP and WTA professionals, the HCC Hawks collegiate tennis team, local middle and high schools, the Special Olympics and more. Over the past few years, around half a million dollars has been invested into the facility, creating a premier tennis center with 13 Decoturf hard courts, 10 Har-Tru clay courts, eight pickleball courts and four dedicated 8U courts with lights on every court. These courts are used in a wide variety of programming and lessons offered by Tejas Pradip Patel HCC Tennis Center.
“Great tennis facilities like the Tejas Pradip Patel HCC Tennis Center help us to grow the game at the grassroots level, and we are proud to recognize them for their ongoing impact on the sport of tennis,” said Craig Morris, Chief Executive, Community Tennis at USTA.“Tejas Pradip Patel HCC Tennis Center has embraced many key tennis initiatives and kept the sport at the forefront of its community each year.”
To be considered for an award, facilities must be under the jurisdiction of a park and recreation department, an educational institution, a nonprofit corporation or be a private or commercially owned and operated facility that offers both USTA and public programming designed to help grow tennis.
“The progress HCC has made to transform this tennis center to an award-winning facility is immeasurable,” said Dean of Student Services Joe Bentrovato. “There have been many individuals and departments who had a part in this, but the most significant force behind this has been Chris Nyholm. HCC will strive to uphold this distinction and provide a premier destination for tennis and pickleball players in Tampa Bay.”
Facilities were judged on the following criteria: overall layout and adaptation to site; excellence of court surface and lights; ease of maintenance; accommodations for players, spectators and press/officials; aesthetics; graphics (including the use of signs and landscaping); amenities such as casual seating for spectators, food services and social areas; and the facilities’ participation in USTA programs.
Nominated facilities were voted on in the following categories:
· Public Courts that are either small tennis centers with 2-10 courts or large tennis centers with 11 or more courts.
· Private Facilities that support the USTA and other “growth of the game” programs open to the public.
· Educational Institutions such as colleges, universities, public and private grade schools, middle schools or high schools.
All 2021 award winners will receive a wall plaque and an all-weather sign, which can be mounted at the facility. One of the award winners will earn the prestigious “Featured Facility of the Year” designation and be honored as part of the USTA’s Semi-Annual Meeting later this year.
“I’m extremely thankful for the opportunity we have to grow and share the game with the Tampa community, and I’m looking forward to continuing our improvements and bringing the Tennis Center to new heights,” Nyholm said.
Hillsborough Community College serves more than 42,000 students annually at its five campuses located throughout Tampa Bay. The College is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. For more information, visit hccfl.edu.
The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level — from local communities to the highest level of the professional game. A not-for-profit organization with more than 655,000 members, it invests 100% of its proceeds in growing the game. It owns and operates the US Open, one of the highest-attended annual sporting events in the world, and launched the US Open Series, linking nine summer WTA and ATP World Tour tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns approximately 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S. and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Billie Jean King Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. The USTA’s philanthropic entity, the USTA Foundation, provides grants and scholarships in addition to supporting tennis and education programs nationwide to benefit under-resourced youth through the National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) network. For more information about the USTA, go to USTA.com or follow the official accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok.