Local woman launches Vail Valley Tennis League
Six clubs will compete throughout the summer in ladies doubles league
Participating in league-play tennis used to require traveling through Glenwood Canyon. Stephanie Bee has changed that.
“With the threat of mudslides due to the burn scars in that area and constant concerns over I-70 closures, I had a vision to bring ladies league tennis to the Vail Valley,” the coordinator of the all-new Vail Valley Tennis League stated. “My mission was focused on bringing together some of the exceptional tennis clubs we have right here.”
During the summer of 2021, Bee was the team captain for multiple tennis teams out of Vail’s Bill Wright Tennis Center at Ford Park. She pitched her idea to club directors and pros through countless emails and phone calls.
“The process was a long and arduous one,” she stated of the two-year endeavor to find out if her vision for a new league was realistic. All the hard work paid off.
The Vail Valley Tennis League will launch its “mini kickoff preview” this week, followed by a 10-week season starting mid-July. The ladies doubles league will feature teams of 6-10 3.0 to 3.5-level players hailing from six local facilities — Bill Wright, Red Sky Ranch, Cordillera Club Tennis, Homestead Court Club, Beaver Creek Tennis and Arrowhead Tennis.
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According to Bee, the kickoff is a “soft launch” that will allow four clubs the chance to “enjoy friendly competition on a slightly smaller scale.” The three-week preview season begins Thursday at 10 a.m. with the team from Red Sky playing at Bill Wright and the Homestead Club facing Cordillera Club. Those teams’ creative names — Court Jesters, Kiss My Ace, Snowcats and Supermoms — and rosters are listed on the Vail Valley Tennis League website.
During the main season, four players from each team will play matches throughout the 10 weeks, with the winning squad receiving an award at the end-of-season celebration. Bee said that although the Vail Valley Tennis League is a social league, it’s still different than a group of friends simply deciding to show up at the tennis courts on a regular basis.
“League play is different in many ways. League teams have set team members, a set schedule for the season, team names, a running tally of wins and losses, an ultimate team winner at the end of the season, etc.” she explained, adding that many of her players engage in social “just-for-fun” play, too.
Joining a team requires a captain (or club director) to select team members. Bee advised interested players to contact their club director or pro and let them know they would like to be on a team. For the inaugural season, she’s capping her league at six groups.
“This league will bring many outstanding clubs in the Vail Valley together,” Bee said.