The July 22–24 weekend of the National Public Parks Tennis Championships (NPPTC)— hosted by the Bucks County Tennis Association (BCTA), Inc., and supported by the Bucks County Tourism Grant Program—was one of great tennis on various levels, and a “hot” ticket both in attendance and weather on days that approached 100 degrees! Courtsides quickly turned into beach scenes with tents and umbrellas popping up to stave off the sun!
Friday evening, just under 90 county participants of BCTA public park tennis programs gathered at Council Rock North High School to compete in a fun team challenge that enabled them to test their tennis prowess against their peers. Some of the athletes enjoyed their first competitive tennis experience that night. For team results, click here.
Saturday and Sunday events showcased the 20th Annual BCTA Jr. Classic, a USTA-sanctioned Level 6 tournament for boys and girls in the 14-, 16-, and 18-and-under age divisions, and adult competitions that included men’s and women’s divisions in a Level 5 Open Adult Prize Money tournament as well as various men’s and women’s NTRP skill level singles and doubles competitions. The adult divisions also highlighted a special Carol White Women’s Doubles competition held in memory of the former local tennis player, coach, and volunteer. Proceeds from this doubles event were donated to breast cancer research and the BCTA Carol White Scholarship program. For junior results, click here. For adult results, click here.
The three-day event attracted over 350 junior and adult players and tennis enthusiasts from the surrounding area and as far away as Minneapolis, Baltimore, and Atlanta—and all were invited, with their guests, to a Player Picnic/Reception held in the historic Tyler Formal Gardens on the Newtown campus of the community college in conjunction with Open Aire Affairs. The picnic included a short program that featured Billie Jean King's acceptance of the 2022 Eugene L. Scott Renaissance Award as well as remembering Carol White, a former local tennis player, coach, and volunteer whose family started a BCTA Scholarship in her name. A doubles division in the NPPTC was named after her, and a portion of the championship proceeds was donated in her memory. The BCTA also recognized the accomplished participants of its Joseph J. Canfield Youth Leadership Program.
Leading up to this historic weekend (as this is the first time the NPPTC was held in the Philadelphia area since 1926 and its first appearance since COVID cancellations in 2020 and 2021) were plenty of promotional activities. The BCTA reproduced the “Original 9” tennis exhibit a recreation of the International Tennis Hall of Fame exhibit that honored the nine women who risked their reputations to start the women’s professional tennis tour. The exhibit has been on display in the Linksz Pavilion on the Newtown Campus of Bucks County Community College. The BCTA also created the Bucks County Tennis Trail that sent tennis enthusiasts to BCTA-programmed public park tennis courts for selfies that could earn them a free NPPTC T-shirt and other tennis merchandise as well as two tickets to the US Open in New York City.
“What a great weekend of tennis,” BCTA Program Director Laura Canfield enthused. “The high heat index did nothing to stifle the quality of tennis or the enthusiasm of the players.”
This historic event was supported by the Bucks County Tourism Grant Program and the following organizations:
The National Public Parks Tennis Association (NPPTA) was founded in 1923 by Dwight Davis who also established the international team competition known as the Davis Cup. The organization holds its annual national park championships at locations around the United States. The tournament was held in Kansas City in 2017 and 2018, and in Dallas in 2019. The NPPTC was not held in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid.
Celebrating its 99th anniversary in 2022, the NPPTC is an important reminder about the impact of public park tennis, and the millions of people who play it. The parks and tourist attractions in Bucks County are the perfect fit—fun for friends and families of all ages!
The BCTA is a Middle States Premier Provider, offering affordable, fun, community-based tennis programming in partnership with local municipalities/school districts at over two dozen outdoor (and some indoor) public sites. A major advocate of youth and adult tennis as a whole, the BCTA services over 2,000 participants county-wide annually.