Tallahassee Tennis Challenger History
Presented by Visit Tallahassee
April 20 – April 26, 2020
ATP Challenger 80
The 21st Tallahassee Tennis Challenger will take place April 20 through April 26 at the City of Tallahassee’s beautiful Forestmeadows Tennis Complex. This site has been host to Satellites, Futures, and the last 15 Challenger events. The first USTA Pro Circuit Challenger in Tallahassee took place in 2000 and has grown steadily every year. When schedules permit, players want to be in Tallahassee. Our site has been a testing ground for the USTA and serves as a model for USTA Pro Circuit Challengers all over the country.
2020 will be the seventh year that the tournament will be played on a clay court surface. Tallahassee will continue to be part of the Roland Garros Wild Card Challenge in which participating American players will compete for points to win a French Open Wild Card, which provides direct entry into the 2020 French Open Grand Slam tournament in Paris.
Tennis Channel began broadcasting Challenger events in 2019 and this year some of the Tallahassee Tennis Challenger will again be broadcast live on Tennis Channel. Live Web-Streaming of the 2020 Tallahassee Challenger matches will again be available. This means fans of tennis all over the world will be able to watch their favorite players’ matches live from their computers, mobile phones, iPads, etc. All for free!
The Tallahassee Tennis Challenger partners with the City of Tallahassee Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Affairs and Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare Foundation in order to bring the tournament to you. Their support, along with 20-year sponsor the Florida Lottery and 14-year sponsor Comcast, will ensure that the high standards of the tournament will be maintained. Other returning sponsors are Visit Tallahassee, Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare, WCTV 6, Rowland Publishing, and Merrill Lynch.
Proceeds from the tournament continue to benefit the Vogter Neuro-ICU. Last year the new state of the art Vogter Neuro Intensive Care Unit opened in the Mustian Surgery Center of Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare. This unit cares for patients of all ages who suffer neurological trauma (such as head injuries, strokes), require surgical intervention for life-threatening illnesses (brain tumors, aneurysms), and many other types of patients too numerous to name. In 2019, the net proceeds were again donated to the D. Mark Vogter Memorial Endowment making the total contribution to the Endowment over $876,000 for the last 21 years.
A new endowment was created in 2010—the Maria Yealdhall Challenger Tennis Fund was established with the Tallahassee Friends of Our Parks Foundation, the fund-raising arm of the Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Affairs Department. All monies collected from ticket sales are donated to this endowment each year and are used to assist in tennis related projects and programs throughout the city. The first improvement for the Tallahassee tennis community from this endowment can be seen at Winthrop Park city courts where 4 beautiful shade structures were installed on the courts and this year shade structures were installed at Tom Brown Park.
A tournament of this size could not happen without the hundreds of committed volunteers who work every year. From ball kids/babes & dudes, who stand on the court for hours, to the ticket-takers, food-Moms and hostesses, housing sponsors, drivers, desk volunteers and organizers, thousands of hours are donated to make this tournament run smoothly. And we are always looking for a few more!! If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for the tournament or volunteering before, during or immediately following the tournament please contact Karen Vogter, Tournament Director, at KVogter@tallahasseechallenger.com