Anyone for some tennis?

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 22, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Players still have time to register for the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts Foundation’s tennis fundraiser this weekend.

The organization is sponsoring an interchanging partner doubles round-robin tennis tournament, beginning at 9 a.m. Saturday. The tournament will be played out on 20 courts around the city, including those at the Suffolk Racquet Club, Nansemond-Suffolk Academy and the Howard D. Mast Tennis complex located behind Farm Fresh.

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Thus far, approximately 35 people have signed up to play, said Mary Louise Darnell, a tennis pro who is spearheading the project. People can sign up for the tournament until Friday afternoon, she said.

.A tennis racquet donated by Head/Penn Racquet Sports will be raffled off, she said. Additionally, there will be an array of tennis-related prizes awarded, including another racquet, sports bags, and briefcases.

Also, an update on the status of the restoration project will also be given during the day.

The tax-deductible entry fee of $50 includes lunch and prizes.

&uot;We asking people if they will make the donation, even if they aren’t able to make it,&uot; Darnell said. &uot;Even if people can’t play, it’s a great opportunity to come out, eat lunch and socialize with former classmates and friends.&uot;

Thus far, the foundation has raised more than $2.5 million in private donations to fund the restoration of the 60,000-square-foot school building.

Plans call for turning the school’s old gymnasium to a ballroom that would hold 300 people for weddings and other social functions. Other features include turning the school’s auditorium into a 500-seat theater for plays and symphonies, an open-air cafe, a gift shop, and a senior citizens center.

Construction will start next January, with a targeted completion date of June 2005 scheduled.

Anyone interested in playing in the tournament should call Darnell at 539-8212.