Kirkland’s Tennis Outreach Programs (TOPs) serves more than 8,000 students each year. Courtesy photo

Kirkland’s Tennis Outreach Programs (TOPs) serves more than 8,000 students each year. Courtesy photo

Eastside Tennis Center and Tennis Outreach Programs to host annual auction

Jim Baugh will serve as headline speaker.

Tennis Industry Association Hall of Fame member Jim Baugh feels that if people are between the ages of 5 and 95, the sport of tennis is at their fingertips.

“You get a great workout and you’re using your mind,” said Baugh, adding that the tennis mentality of thinking about one’s opponent, partner or next shot helps people stay young and alert as well.

At age 69, Baugh still plays a little bit of tennis and works out every day, either with a personal trainer, on his bike or on the golf course.

“I get my best trains of thought after I’ve done a workout,” said Baugh, who is involved with the national charity PHIT America.

Baugh will travel from his home of Jupiter, Florida to be the headline speaker at the Kirkland-based Eastside Tennis Center and Tennis Outreach Programs (TOPs) eighth annual benefit auction at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Seattle Redmond Marriott. The event will feature a TOPspin auction, a live band, a special performance from TOPs students and more.

Launched by Marceil Whitney in 2002, the nonprofit TOPs serves more than 8,000 students — ages 3-18 — each year during classes in adaptive tennis, wheelchair tennis, wake-up tennis for elementary school children, Boys and Girls Club programs and parks and recreation classes. More than 2,000 students received financial assistance in 2018 and there was free equipment available for families in need.

“It’s been an outstanding resource for the community to have people have a program like this, and the success, it just speaks for itself,” said TOPs general manager Marsh Riggs, noting that $50,000 a year goes toward scholarships and programs. “There’s such a great need for the programs. As much as we do, we could twice as much more. That’s why it’s so important that this auction succeeds.” Riggs added that they have raised between $100,000-$150,000 at the auctions each year.

Baugh got on board with TOPs through Riggs, a longtime friend he met through being involved in the tennis industry.

“We’ve got to do a lot better job of getting kids moving and getting them off the couch, getting them off their electronic devices and getting them active and playing sports,” Baugh said of one of his speaking points at the auction.

Riggs, 60, plays tennis five days a week and enjoys the game more than ever.

“Still living the dream. Started as a young kid taking up tennis and then it’s just carried me everywhere all over the country. I’ve met all kinds of interesting people,” he said.

For more information, visit topskirkland.org


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@kirklandreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kirklandreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in Sports

WIAA delays start dates for fall sports

Football practices to begin Sept. 5, all other sports planned for Sept. 7.

Northwest’s volleyball team stays connected during trying times

The squad has been using Zoom to hold weekly meetings during which they check in and pray for each other if needed.

No-show season: WIAA announces cancellation of spring sports, activities

Due to the school closure extension, the cancellation includes all practices, competitions, tournaments and championships, WIAA says.

There’s still hope for spring sports, WIAA announces

Washington Interscholastic Activities Association making contingency plans for high school sports competitions after extension of stay home order.

The WIAA announced Wednesday that if schools reopen at the conclusion of the six-week statewide shutdown ordered last week by Gov. Jay Inslee, then the state championships will go on as planned. (WIAA photo)
WIAA still hoping to hold state championships in May

But if the school shutdown extends past April 24, those championships could be in jeopardy.

Athletic practices and competitions cancelled through April 24 due to coronavirus outbreak

By Andy Nystrom and Benjamin Olson Gov. Jay Inslee announced on March… Continue reading

Games are being postponed in response to coronavirus outbreak

In response to the recent coronavirus outbreak, Eastside schools are taking precautions… Continue reading

Kangs fall to Bulldogs in championship game

Lake Washington finished in second place at the 3A state basketball tournament.

Kangs reach 3A state tournament final on Saturday

LW defeats Eastside Catholic in semifinals.

Kangs advance to the semifinals at the Dome

LW beats Mt. Spokane and faces top-seeded Eastside Catholic next.

Hardwood Classic tips off after coronavirus outbreak

By Benjamin Olson and Andy Nystrom Basketball players took to the court… Continue reading