tennis can

Canadians across country encouraged to play tennis outdoors and share on social media

Toronto, February 2, 2016 – Tennis Canada announced on Tuesday the launch of Tennis Canada Winter Fest, a new grassroots campaign that will encourage Canadians across the country to get outside and play tennis … in the ice and snow. A pilot initiative, Tennis Canada Winter Fest, to be held on February 15, will see tennis fans and players hitting forehands in parkas and toques while sharing their experiences on social media for the chance to win prizes.

Canadians can participate simply by heading out on their own and playing outdoors, whether it’s shoveling their driveway, playing in their backyard, or heading to their local park or public courts. There will be some Tennis Canada Winter Fest events held across the country as well, while local groups and clubs are also encouraged to run their own winter tennis events.

“It has already been such a phenomenal year for Canadian tennis on the international circuit, and now we want Canadians at home to feel part of our ever-burgeoning and proud tennis community,” said Kelly Murumets, president and CEO, Tennis Canada. “With the new season just underway, it is the perfect time to celebrate our sport and stimulate participation and conversation surrounding tennis. We encourage all Canadians to take part in Winter Fest in their own way. Tennis is such a fun and inclusive sport and there is no time like the present to get out there, pick up a racquet and enjoy spending time with friends and family.”

Participants who share their photos and videos on Twitter and Instagram that day with the hashtag #wintertennis will have the chance to win various prizes, such as signed memorabilia and official Winter Fest merchandise. Some of the submissions may even appear in a future Tennis Canada public service announcement.

“Tennis is a sport that can be played by all ages and all abilities – in all seasons and on all kinds of courts,” said Joel Dembe, whose participation in Winter Fest will be his first event as official Tennis Canada ambassador. “I can’t think of anything more Canadian than winter tennis, so I hope to see lots of people outdoors having fun with our great sport on February 15. Dress warm, stay safe, and share your photos and videos!”

A sport that people can play throughout their whole lives, tennis has grown substantially in Canada over the past several years, in large part due to the success of Canadian stars like Eugenie Bouchard, Milos Raonic, and Vasek Pospisil. Since 2008, overall participation has increased more than 20 per cent, while 57 per cent of Canadians also showed an interest in tennis last year. Participation amongst kids under 12 is also growing, with one driver being that tennis is considered a safe sport by parents.