Salt Lake Tennis and Health Club hosts Of Love TournamentSep 13, 2021 11:38AM ● By Anagha Rao
By Anagha Rao | [email protected]
Since 2009, the Of Love Tournament, Salt Lake City’s largest tennis tournament, has been helping young people improve their skills while raising money for type 1 diabetes research.
The Of Love Tournament takes place every year in the first week of August. This year, the tournament took place from July 31 to Aug. 7 at Liberty Park, Salt Lake Tennis and Health Club and the Sports Mall. This tournament’s divisions include men’s singles and doubles, women’s singles and doubles, and mixed singles and doubles.
Children and teens can also participate in this experience. The Of Love Tournament has a junior division for children under the age of 10 and teens ages 12 to 18. Since this is a level four junior tournament, junior participants will get points toward their national ranking.
In addition to tennis, the first ever 2021 Of Love Pickleball Tournament took place this year. This tournament is for people who want to support the fundraising for type 1 diabetes but don’t play tennis. The pickleball tournament was from July 26 to July 30. It was open to all ages.
The Of Love Tournament is held in memory of Ardene R. Bullard. Bullard passed away at the age of 54, and her passion for tennis inspired her teammates and family to begin a small memorial tournament just for women. Eventually, this tournament expanded to include children, teens and men.
Bullard was also passionate about juvenile diabetes research after her granddaughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 18 months. Because of this, all the money raised by the Of Love tournament will be donated to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).
“I really love how we can get this huge group together for a bigger cause and make these kids feel like they have a support system where they belong,” said Andrea, a staff member of the Of Love Tournament.
The Of Love Tournament also hosts a silent auction every year. This year, their silent auction raised more than $20,000. This auction allows people to bid on a variety of different items including sports passes, vacations and events. Some items auctioned at this year’s events include Utah Jazz tickets, a private lesson with Micheal Topp and a trip to Mexico.