HPTA’s 34th anniversary celebration on Oct. 23, 2010, was a great success, attracting more than 100 members and featuring a reunion of several charter members:Â Bettye Burford (HPTA’s first president),Â Alice Robertson, Jo LeBlanc, Mary Lynn Segalla, Lucille Hicks Doane, Liz Dickson andÂ Louis Bordelon.
The original members brought several large scrapbooks, full of photos, letters, newsletters, and flyers to share with current members. Â See ourÂ HPTA History page.
HPTA’s interesting story begins with founderÂ Eleanor Owens (1929-2004) who started the Highland Park round robin as a teaching tool for her ladies’ class.
Our charter members shared some wonderful stories, including one that really captured the enthusiastic spirit of our founders who were determined to play tennis even if the courts weren’t completed yet in 1977. Â What to do?
“Well, the concrete courts at Highland Park were barely dry, and we couldn’t wait to play,” said Alice Robertson, charter HPTA member. Â “So we tied some ‘horse rope’ across the center posts and made a temporary net. Â Then, we played tennis, of course!”
Other charter members recalled that the Highland Park “clubhouse” was nothing more than a shack with a telephone, and the first restrooms were “portable.”
Nothing stopped our founding members from playing then, and nothing stops us 34 years later.