10 best cities in the U.S for tennis

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by ESP#1, Mar 5, 2009.

  1. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    Those of you who have traveled the country, where are the best cities for tennis?

    From what I've gathered, there are alot of hot spots in South Florida, New York, DC, and SoCal.

    Let me know what you think
     
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  2. Lefty5

    Lefty5 Hall of Fame

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    Atlanta has more leagues than anyone can even play. EVERYBODY plays, all the time. Its great.
     
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  3. qq49h

    qq49h New User

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    Atlanta by far. Alta alone has 80000 members. Then there is USTA, Ultimate Tennis, K2, Visionary, and probably more leagues.
     
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  4. GeoffB

    GeoffB Rookie

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    Of the places I've lived/been on the West Coast

    Seattle: Great in the summer, with long long days, but gets shut down many days each year with just enough drizzle to make the courts unplayable. Outdoor tennis is seasonal.

    San Francisco/Bay Area is great: SF itself is chilly and windy much of the year, even (especially!) in the summer, and heavy fog can make the courts slick in the morning until it burns off. Take a ten minute drive out of the city in almost any direction and it gets consistently warm and beautiful about six months a year, and playable most other months. The rain/drizzle situation isn't as bad as Seattle, but SF does get shut down by weather often enough that I'd say we have quasi-year round tennis here.

    Los Angeles: My knowledge is limited to Santa Monica. Good scene, plenty of good public courts and year round good weather. Eyes may burn on smoggy days, unfortunately - try to play by the coast!

    San Diego: Top spot for the west coast. Phenomenal year round weather, perfect climate, air quality reasonably good. Terrific public facilities and private clubs. Weather here is so good that people hang out by the courts, so there's an especially good scene.

    My only non-west coast spot was Manhattan. There's a lot to recommend about living here, but easy and cheap access to tennis courts ain't it. Court time seemed to be either very expensive or a huge hassle. Was only here for six months, so I don't know too much about it. I mainly played squash, and I hate squash. Froze my fingers off while walking twenty paces between buildings on the Columbia campus.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2009
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  5. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    I always hear about Atlanta. I started a thread months back about the best US tennis city and Atlanta won hands down.

    I was just in Phoenix visting my parents and played in a tournament. I talked to several local players and was surprised to find out that the Phoenix tennis scene wasn't that great relative to the size of the metro area and the abundance of good weather. [Note: Almost all the Phoenix guys said that the extreme heat at the peak of summer wasn't a huge issue except on a handful of days. They either played early in the morning or at night. Tons of lighted courts and simply being out of the sun makes a huge difference even if the temp is still high.]
     
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  6. Skanavis

    Skanavis Rookie

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    Um definitely Wauwatosa Wisconsin. Theres courts 6 blocks away from me in 3 directions. Altogether we have like 50 tennis courts in a small city like wauwatosa. Most are lighted until 10:30 at night. Also there all in like really nice places, like in a park next to a river. Yea definitely wauwatosa No contest. And we have a lot of good players from milwaukee playing in wauwatosa leagues.
     
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  7. (K)evin

    (K)evin Rookie

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    well Connecticut really sucks to rent a court for an hour its $49
     
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  8. Chris De Tone

    Chris De Tone Rookie

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    Atlanta is the best...but the area in which I live is pretty good...Tampa-St. Pete, Bradenton, Sarasota. But definitely not in the same weight class as Atlanta.
     
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  9. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    Wow! atlanta seems like great spot, any tourneys there?
     
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  10. lawrence

    lawrence Hall of Fame

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    that is theft. 49 for an hour?
    the only time id pay 49 for an hour of tennis is if a pete sampras hitting session came with the court hire
     
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  11. blue12

    blue12 Rookie

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    What are the best cities in Florida for tennis?
     
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  12. SlapShot

    SlapShot Hall of Fame

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    Minneapolis is actually a very decent city for tennis - if you don't mind playing indoor 6 months of the year. The actual number of tennis players is high, and there is a lot of access to public outdoor courts during the summer.
     
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  13. goober

    goober Legend

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    I would tend to agree. Given the location and weather, the tennis scene in Phoenix should be bigger than it actually stands right now. That said- pretty much everybody I have met who has moved here from the midw3st and East coast thinks it is way better than where they moved from.
     
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  14. abbeytxs

    abbeytxs New User

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    I vote for Austin Texas (and the surrounding area). Plenty of courts. Lots of public, lighted courts. Lots of different leagues. There are at least one or two tournaments each month. Year round play. Plenty of players of all levels. Awesome college level tennis to watch. A couple of pro exhibition matches each year. A couple of junior tennis academies, plus Newk's ranch is not that far away.

    The only thing Austin is lacking when it comes to tennis, is not enough variety in court surfaces available. There a couple of clay and grass courts at the high end country clubs, but that is pretty much it.
     
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  15. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Orlando is pretty good. I can't speak for the other cities in Florida. I played a guy who moved from Atlanta in a 10 person 4.5 league a few years ago. He said in Atlanta there would be 8 of the same size leagues and then the winner from each would play each other in a playoff. So all this talk about Atlanta does not surprise me.
     
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  16. rasajadad

    rasajadad Hall of Fame

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    Western Massachusetts
     
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  17. Douggo

    Douggo Semi-Pro

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    Tennis magazine did a story several (many? I'm old now) on the best U.S. tennis cities, and named St. Cloud, MN number one. I kid you not.
     
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  18. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    My parents live in St. Cloud and I can guarantee that it should not be number one. The tennnis community is pretty good considering that it's only about 120,000 metro area and has only 5 indoor courts (which matters given the winters). But, it's not that great. St. Cloud is located about an hour and 15 minutes NW of Minneapolis on I-94.
     
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  19. SlapShot

    SlapShot Hall of Fame

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    I grew up halfway between Mpls and Cloud town - St. Cloud has 2 solid HS programs (Tech and Apollo), but I agree that it's not really what I'd call a booming tennis city. Their junior tourneys did draw some solid players, though - I don't think that I ever made it past the 3rd round in a tourney there.
     
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  20. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    I like the idea of austin being a great tennis city, the weather there always seems great, anyone know if its humid there or if its dry heat?
     
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  21. abbeytxs

    abbeytxs New User

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    Depends on the day. We have both, although I would say that we have more dry days than humid.
     
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  22. DrewRafter8

    DrewRafter8 Professional

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    Snow Hill, NC. End of discussion....
     
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  23. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    You sound really confident, what makes snow hill so great?
     
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  24. TonLars

    TonLars Professional

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    Yeah, thats definitely funny. 20-25 years ago and earlier apparently it was doing well with what it had, even 10 years ago when I was playing around there it was doing much better than current. These days the programs could really be doing better and alot more, and the juniors and highschool teams are not real strong.
     
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  25. jmjmkim

    jmjmkim Semi-Pro

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    Ojai, CA in April
     
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  26. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    You could say the same thing about Orlando. We have 4 to 5 humid months a year and the rest are fairly dry but the humidity is so oppressive in the summer it can make you forget about these dry months we have now!
     
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  27. jwr1972

    jwr1972 Rookie

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    Have to go with the Atlanta area since I live here and can play tennis year round. There's even a new indoor complex at James Creek for those nasty days.
     
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  28. The Wreck

    The Wreck Semi-Pro

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    I'll throw in more support for Atlanta. It truly has the most tennis opportunities. USTA isn't even the most popular league here; ALTA dominates. There are tournaments nearly every weekend, and its just about a guarantee that if you go by any neighborhood or park on a Saturday or Sunday, there will be a match going on. Just about 10 miles from where I live, they built and marketed an entire neighborhood based solely around tennis. And with so many people playing, you never have a hard time finding a player your level to hit with.

    I've even heard that they don't play pro tournaments in Atlanta anymore because all the tennis players would would come to watch are busy playing their ALTA matches every weekend.

    I'm done gushing now. Atlanta is awesome. That's all.
     
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  29. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    Thats impressive, how are the winters? im guessing pretty mild, really sounds like a great city for tennis in the U.S
     
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  30. jwr1972

    jwr1972 Rookie

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    Winters are mostly ok but we will have those days where it doesn't get out of the 30's(very rare). I am playing in a winter league and it has been fun. Most days it will be upper 40's at the least and up to 73 today for example. :)
     
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  31. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    Do they have alot of singles tournaments?
     
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  32. jgn1013

    jgn1013 Semi-Pro

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    I don't think their are many USTA tournaments, mainly because league plays takes up most of Saturday morning. I play year round, the weather is awesome, this weekend we has 70+ temp. and sunny!

    Why would you pay $25 for tournament, when you can join a league for $25-35, mostly with 7 matches guaranteed.
     
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  33. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    Agreed. You're going to get a ton more league play than you are tourney play. If we only had Alta, we'd still be one of the more popular cities. Instead, we have several other leagues, singles and doubles, to satisfy a tennis thirst. Not many indoor courts, though. There might be less than a handful in the entire state that allow you to reserve courts for matches. (That knocks the PGA Superstore indoor courts out of the picture.)

    As for the weather, there are some bitterly cold days that make playing tennis impossible. For example, last weekend, it snowed a couple inches. This past weekend, it was sunny and in the 70s. Summer can get a bit humid but nothing too rough.
     
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  34. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    True, the tennis scene in St. Cloud was better previously. I played high school tennis in the late 80s and early 90s. My high school was in the north subsection of section 8AA for tennis and we could never get past St. Cloud Tech (who was always ranked in the top 3 at the time) in the regional final to get to the State tournament.

    At that time, the Boland brothers played for Tech, including Brian, who is now the head coach at the University of Virginia.

    I remember playing the St. Cloud summer USTA tournament and it was huge - played at the St. Cloud Country Club and the tiered courts (two on top, five on the bottom) next to Hallenbeck Hall at St. Cloud State University (which I think are gone now). Many of the Minneapolis, St. Paul, and metro suburban players would play, which was always intimdiating for us kids from the sticks of west central MN (LOL).

    St. Cloud St. had a decent division II program and I think the local rec programs were very well organized. The indoor club out by I-94 closed and now the only indoor courts in town are the 5 under a bubble on the back of Gold's Gym in Sartell (suburb just to the north of St. Cloud). I'm not sure if St. Cloud State U. has some sort of multi-purpose court with tennis lines where students and the team can play.

    I can see where St. Cloud in the past could have been the No. 1 tennis city (at least "small" tennis city), as there seemed to be an engaged and organized community and a lot of participation for a city its size. But, it seems like a silly distinction today.
     
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  35. KFwinds

    KFwinds Professional

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    34 posts on this thread and no one has mentioned Chicago? There is a TON of tennis going on around here, especially in the 'burbs. I know Atlanta is a hotspot, but I gotta tell ya; I've known some folks that have moved here (I live in the Aurora area) from Atlanta, and they tend to have to adjust a little to our level of play... I'm not saying it's not competitive down there, but I think there are more players in this area simply due to the higher population.

    Unfortuntely though, like Minneapolis, it's indoor tennis for a good chunk of the year. The good news is that there are plenty of reasonably priced facilities around and lots of league play (mainly NITTL and USTA, but there are others). I personally prefer playing outdoors, and usually try to milk as much out the summers as I can get :)
     
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  36. KFwinds

    KFwinds Professional

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    That sounds awesome. The folks I've met from Atlanta have talked a lot about ALTA; I'd definitely like to check out that scene sometime.
     
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  37. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    Although I don't live there, I can testify to Atlanta as being the best spot in the US for tennis. I've been told that many new communities just weren't doing well unless they had a tennis club and pro in the initial build. There are many former pros and D1 players who play Alta. USTA isn't that big a deal over there from what I'm told, it's all ALTA.
     
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  38. max

    max Hall of Fame

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    I like Wisconsin quite a bit; underrated, it should be the Colorado of the '10 decade. Excellent state.

    KF: where in the surburbs? south, west, north? You know a lot of that '70s tennis boom was started by folks on the North Side.

    Atlanta has a lot of tennis, but I just don't think for a minute I'd like the weather in the South. Too much for me!
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2009
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  39. jgn1013

    jgn1013 Semi-Pro

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    ALTA is to me a more "social" event, the men play during the Spring & Fall season, every Saturday morning, 5 doubles line. Home team supplies food, sports & adult beverages. Women play Spring & Fall on Sunday @ 1 PM.


    Summer & Winter season you play USTA, same concept but not as popular, not sure why. I like having 2 singles line, & 3 doubles lines.
     
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  40. tennismike33

    tennismike33 Semi-Pro

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    Last year I played in Columbia, SC. Great tennis complexes with a mixture of hard courts and clay courts. Lexington Tennis complex was a fantastic place to play. Met a lot of great people there that played a high level of tennis!!!
     
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  41. KFwinds

    KFwinds Professional

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    West suburbs. I live near Aurora, and my "home" club is the Vaughan Athletic Center (formerly the Aurora Tennis Club). The Rush Copley Healthplex is actually a little closer to me, but the Vaughan A.C. is much less expensive.
     
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  42. pines2222

    pines2222 New User

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    Norcal is underrated in activity. The USTA leagues have exploded in popularilty over the last several years. Just to give you a sense, there are currently approximately 200 Men's 3.5 teams signed up for the Norcal region for the upcoming Spring 2009 Leagues. That seems like a lot for me, but I'd be interested to hear how that rates relative to other regions.

    Also, the weather isn't that bad. It rains in the winter, but you can certainly play year around. And in most parts of the region, it doesn't get too hot in the summer.
     
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  43. Matt Miller

    Matt Miller New User

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    Atlanta

    Yes as a native Hotlantian I would have to agree best for tennis of all levels. We do have a tournament here now and have always had some kind of professional event here whether ATP or not., what surprises me is that in the history of my sport we have only had 3 professionals from the state of GA
     
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  44. dgold44

    dgold44 Rookie

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    Florida and S. California are the mecca for US tennis by far.
     
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  45. g4driver

    g4driver Hall of Fame

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    http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20100907/PC1602/309079935

    As a native Atlantan, the influx of the masses has ruined the town. Traffic is terrible and I will remember the city before it was ruined after the -announcement of 1996 Olympics which sparked too much growth.

    Thankful to be playing tennis in Charleston, which is hands down one of the coolest town in the world, for tennis, food and things to do. Sorry but Atlanta is so yesterday. Born and raised there, and glad to be gone. It was cool in the 80s and early 90s, but sorry the masses ruined my home.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2015
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  46. Rjtennis

    Rjtennis Hall of Fame

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    That's pretty common for an indoor court at least.
     
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  47. 2ndServe

    2ndServe Professional

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    Socal definitely has some hotbeds of tennis near. Though every person I've met from Atlanta raves about the tennis community and there are probably a ton of options with millions of people.

    I live in a small town called Irvine with 200k people so it's definitely not a "large town" but within 2 miles there are 20+ courts. Off the top of my head I can count 50 courts and almost all of them are near club level quality courts used all the time.

    I've lived in a lot of the cities surrounding it and oddly the tennis scene in those cities is completely lacking. What's the criteria, I've read others where Bradenton was the top city.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2015
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  48. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    I don't know what the 10 best cities for tennis in the US are except that Atlanta is one of them and that it has a strong case for being number one on that list. Tampa, Phoenix, Miami, Hilton Head, and San Diego are also places I've been that seemed like tennis hotbeds.

    I will make a pitch for Mobile, AL as it has the world's largest public tennis facility with 76 hard courts iirc.

    One way to answer the question would be to compare tennis league participation per capita in various cities.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2015
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  49. g4driver

    g4driver Hall of Fame

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    Porchese makes far few cars than Ford, and while Charleston has fewer courts and players, I've never meet anyone who has lived in Atlanta and wished they couldn't live and play tennis in Charleston.
    I am an Native Atlantan and I am not the only native Atlantan who feels this way about Charleston. If you are retired and eat dinner at 4 pm, HH is probably more your style. King Street is open late .

    the Rarebit serves late ;)
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2015
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  50. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    It isn't by city nor does it blend in per capita, but I'd looked at USTA players by state in this blog post: http://computerratings.blogspot.com/2015/02/interesting-league-stats-usta-league.html

    California leads the way not surprisingly, but Georgia is a strong #2 just ahead of Texas. The next three are North Carolina, Colorado, and Florida.
     
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