Denver's original "Racquet for the Cure" event was developed as a one-day, women's only competition (hosted on a Saturday in February), preceded by a Friday evening Mixed Doubles kick-off fundraiser. It has since grown to include added benefit divisions, while retaining its focus on the "women's only" Saturday format.
After the benefit events, a variety of exhibitions, clinics and challenge fundraisers with invited guests, pros and celebrities (as available), it's all-day team playoffs on Saturday. Entrants are assigned to balanced squads containing a player in each of the Open, A, B and C skill categories, plus doubles teams in Open and A – then the fun begins!
Each team player is issued an "identifier" (colored ribbons, bandanas) that signifies their group, and the various drop-downs begin. No matter how early in the day you might lose a match, you'll keep going! From the standard divisions, players drop into satellite brackets for continued play.
At the awards party, it's the novices who get to select prizes first, and the squad that won the most total matches is named the team winner. See past year's social media coverage and view available photo galleries on Facebook. And read the full "how to" format organizer - at right - to start your own Racquet for the Cure event!
How to ... Sponsor ... If you need paperwork to get things rolling, you can download a series of print pieces that support the effort. Click below for:
Sponsorship package, showing levels and benefits
Sponsor letter, containing event details and donation options
Event flyer, with event dates and format
How to ... Set the Teams Teams are formed by assigning one singles entrant from each level of play; an Open player, an A, a B, a C and Novice. Depending on the pool of players, you might end up building a team with one strong Open player and two B players, as opposed to one Open + one A + one B. Do the best you can to construct even teams if you don’t have enough players in specific skill divisions. For doubles you can pair the Open Player and A player from each team and do the same with the B and C players from each team. Or you can offer "doubles only" as a division entry and pair up players who only want to play doubles and assign them to teams separately.
Once the teams are set, you'll assign each team a different color bandana or whatever you choose to identify the teams (patches, armbands, wristbands). This gives everyone a chance to easily find and meet their teammates. To score points for the team, we keep a tally as each game is played, using this scoring format: win=10 pts, loss in 2=5 pts, loss in a tiebreaker=7 pts, 3 pts awarded for playing the match. If someone forfeits 10 points are given to the winner and none to the forfeiting player. Add up all the points at the end of the day and that team is your winner!
How to ... Do the Draws Usually the tournament is one day, so we try to schedule the entrants for as much playing time as possible. This also depends on how many players you have against the number of courts available. An Olympic, or satellite, format is one way to go, or playing for points in the division, like they do at Masters events is another way. If necessary, you can shorten the matches to two games to 11, tiebreaker to 7. Sometimes we allow for up to three drop down divisions so players get at least three games, plus their doubles matches. All-in-all, at the end of the day, no one complains about not getting enough court time!
RACQUET FOR THE CURE