Comox Valley Tennis Club: Everything You Need To Know (photos)

Table of Contents

Introduction

I have been a member of various tennis clubs in several cities for more than 40 years now.
This is one of the best and my personal favorite.
I’ve been a Comox Valley Tennis Club member since 2016 and remain one of its biggest fans.

Here’s a picture of me practicing my serve on Court 5 of the club

Practicing my serve on Court 5. Photo by Jim Van Wyck

This article is a quick review of what I believe are the pros (many) and cons (few) of the tennis club, and why I believe it’s perhaps the greatest recreational value here in the Comox Valley.

Location of the Comox Valley Tennis Club

The club is located in beautiful little Anderton Park in downtown Comox.
The address is 175 Stewart St, Comox, BC V9M 2T5

Does the tennis club have a website?

Yes, it’s at https://comoxvalleytennis.org/

Is there free parking at the tennis club?

Yes. There is a convenient free parking lot inside Anderton Park beside Court 1.
Parking is also allowed on Balmoral Avenue and Stewart Street which run along side of Anderton Park.

How Many Courts Are There?

The Comox Valley Tennis Club has 6 courts. Courts 1 to 4 are in one area, and Courts 5 and 6 in another.
Courts are open to members and non-members on a first-come, first-served basis.
If all the courts are busy, there is a 45 minute limit on play and one of the courts will be vacated for you to play there.
The public is welcome to play on any court, as long as a club event is not sheduled.
Courts 5 and 6 will still be open for the public to play during club events.

Lewis Park Tennis Courts

Although not a formal part of the Comox Valley Tennis Club, many members also play at the tennis courts in Lewis Park in Courtenay. There are four well-maintained courts in Lewis Park.
Members of the CVTC facilities crew help with the maintenance of the Lewis Park tennis courts, donating their time and labor, as well as new nets, net straps and other materials.

Learn more about Lewis Park here.

Clubhouse

The clubhouse is one of the club’s nicest features. On the main floor are storage rooms and a covered veranda where you can set up chairs to watch courts 3 and 4.

Comox Valley Tennis Club Clubhouse. Photo by Jim Van Wyck

The entire second floor has the clubhouse main room and a balcony where members often sit to have a beverage and watch matches below.

Here’s a photo of the view of Court 4 from the clubhouse balcony.

Court 4 as viewed from the clubhouse balcony. Photo by Jim Van Wyck

How Much Does It Cost To Join The Comox Valley Tennis Club?

Membership is only $40.00 per year.

Just a few of the best membership benefits are:

  • Participation in league play
  • Participation in drop-in events
  • Invitations to all social events
  • Sign out the ball machine and practice your game
  • Kids can participate in junior lessons and camps with Pro Simon Richards (currently run through the Comox Rec Center)
  • Access to annual club tournaments
  • We have an annual Christmas party!
  • You can access the membership directory to find new playing partners

The membership money goes towards the maintenance and upkeep of the courts and clubhouse.
This joint program is in partnership with the Town of Comox and the City of Courtenay Parks and Recreation departments.

We are also a member of Tennis BC.

Leagues

We have been using the Box Ladder format for singles and doubles leagues in the last several years.

They have proven very successful.

Box leagues have a time period, usually 2 months or so in the spring and summer.

For each match, each player will compete with all of the other players (or doubles teams) in their division.

At the end of each round, the players who rank top and second in their respective divisions are promoted to the next highest division, while the players who rank last in their respective divisions are demoted to the next lowest division.

In the doubles box league, there are no set teams. Each player keeps their individual scores in each match.

Try A Drop-In Session To Meet New Friends and Playing Partners

The Comox Valley Tennis Club is a great way for newcomers and even veteran players to enjoy the game in an open and welcoming environment where they can hone their skills and take on a variety of challenges. Drop-in sessions are one of the best ways for newcomers to get involved, as they provide an opportunity to play with other members on the court, and meet new friends and playing partners.

We understand that joining a new club and not knowing anyone to play with can be a big problem, but we also know that it’s difficult to meet other players at the start of each season. That’s why we offer weekly drop-in sessions during the first few months of every season – these are especially helpful for those who want to get started in the sport or who need a little extra help getting acclimated.

We try to find you a match with other players that are the same level as you, just by showing up and taking part in the drop-ins.

Many tennis players who are new members of the club will start their search for people to play with by meeting them at the drop-ins and exchanging contact information. They then use this contact information to create matches when the leagues start. Some players may even find partners during these matches and continue to play with them throughout the league.

Comox Valley Drop In Tennis
WARNING! You will meet all kinds at the Comox Valley Tennis drop-in sessions.

Can I Take Tennis Lessons At The Comox Valley Tennis Club?

Yes. The club pro, Simon Richards is a certified instructor with Tennis Canada. He offers group lessons, private lessons, and programs for juniors.

On a personal note, I have known many tennis coaches over the years, and Simon is a true professional, dedicated to delivering high-quality lessons and coaching.

You can learn more about lessons with Simon on his website.

Members Can Practice With The Club Ball Machine

Once you have taken a lesson or two with Simon, or even if you just want to work on your strokes, using the club ball machine is a great way to practice.

Members can sign out the ball machine and use it on Courts 4 or 5 for 45 minutes.

WE have videos on how members can use and operate the ball machine. Photo by Jim Van Wyck

You can find video lessons on how to use the ball machine here.

A Conversation with Club President Sandra Clarke and Communications Director Catherine Black

In order to get another perspective on the tennis club, I had a short conversation with Sandra Clarke, who is currently club president, and Catherine Black, who is in charge of club communications.

This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.

Jim: Hi Sandra and Catherine, thanks for meeting with me about our beloved tennis club.
Sandra, you are now the President.  How did you come to join the club?

Sandra: When we moved to the valley I wanted to make new friends.

But at first it was difficult.

 I would go to our local gym and try to make friends, but everyone’s there for a purpose, which I get. But I loved tennis so I thought I would try the tennis club.

 I’m a little reserved and I could be a little bit shy.  

 I came to the tennis meet and greet with my husband. 

He held my hand, literally to help me <laugh>  REALLY!

And everyone was so welcoming right away. I felt at home and instant, like instant friends, instant family instantly. Yeah. 

And it changed my life  So tennis made me feel welcome to the Comox Valley. 

And just five years late,  I have developed some really close friends and tennis partners.

JIm:

 I saw you having fun out there. You two ladies were just radiating happiness and fun.

Sandra:

Yes.  I’ll be honest. I like to win. I’m very competitive. I’ve always been. 

And I’ve learned to leave my ego at home. Now I’m just grateful that I can play and that I can keep up because I’ll tell you, this is a true story. 

When I first played my first match, I thought it was time to go home after the first set. 

<Laugh> and I’m like, yay. Thanks, guys. And they’re like, Sandra. No, there’s another set. There’s more coming. And then the second set. OK. See you guys. 

But no, they wanted to keep playing with me. 

It took me a while to build up to that. And now our rallies and sets are going so long. 

JIm:

You guys were having great points out there this morning.

Sandra:

Thanks!  I’ve put the time in for lessons, 

My friend Catherine here, was instrumental in improving my game because we got out and hit weekly. And I took lessons from Sue Tomkins, which really helped my game.

JIm:

Yes, Sue is fantastic

Sandra:

For me. Yeah. And then  now I’m taking and continuing my lessons because I like learning and I want to keep improving. 

But the tennis club is just it literally saved my life. 

I’m not even kidding. <Laugh> because I was  talking to the walls at home. 

JIm:

I have a friend, Doug Shantz, who drives to Nanaimo a few times weekly. 

He takes lessons down there at that club; at 70 years old,  he’s getting better.

Sandra:

He is. He really is.

JIm:

Now think about that. What other sport can you get to get better at in our 70s?

Sandra:

We’re never too old. Yeah. We never are. And I see a lot of the people playing here, you know, in their seventies and how it must be, you know, adding healthy years to their life.

Yeah. It’s a huge inspiration.

Catherine: 

I totally agree. I love that challenge. You know, it’s something you can spend 20 years at and still keep improving.

JIm:

And what has the Comox tennis club meant for you, Catherine?

Catherine:

I would definitely reiterate what  Sandra said kind of the sense of community. 

Having a place and meeting different people and you get involved in it

 I play tennis, but there’s more than just what’s on the court, you know?

JIm:

Yes. There’s the fun of the changeovers.

Catherine:

Yeah. <Laugh>, you know, seriously between the games it’s a time to catch up with your friends.

JIm:

Yes, this is a particularly friendly and social club. 

Speaking of someone who’s been in many tennis clubs, this club is really friendly.  And it’s not snobby, no. Tennis can be a snobby sport in many places.

Sandra:

Yeah. I bet.

JIm:

And cliquey, you know? Yeah.

Catherine::

Yes, but that’s not really a problem here.

JIm:

Are the prices to join the club on the website?

Sandra:

It is $40 for the year. I mean what a deal. 

If you have your tennis racket, some tennis balls and your shoes you’re good to go.

JIm:

Considering the fantastic facilities there is no better bargain anywhere in the valley

Sandra:

Yes, we’re all really happy with the tennis facilities, the nice clubhouse and all the social events that happen here.

Exactly. And there’s the ball machine that the members can utilize. 

JIm:

Thanks Sandra and Catherine.  I’m just going to take some pictures and do a little write-up of the club for the new Comox Valley News website.  Thanks for your time!

Sandra and Georgie Girl. Photo by Sandra Clarke
Catherine Black. Photo by Catherine Black
  • 6 hard court tennis courts - in great condition
    (5)
  • Clubhouse, viewing areas, seating
    (5)
  • Lots of free parking
    (5)
  • Leagues and Drop-Ins to meet new people
    (5)
  • Tennis Lessons from the Club Pro Simon
    (5)
  • Memberships only $40/year
    (5)
  • Friendly members and welcoming envifonment
    (5)
5

Quick Summary of the Comox Valley Tennis Club

The 6-court club is in the heart of the town of Comox. There are lots of events and activities, especially in the spring. It’s perhaps the single best value for a recreational membership in the entire Comox Valley.

Pros

Usually no waiting for a free court Lovely park setting with swings and play apparatus for children Lots of free parking Low-cost memberships at only $40/year Many events and activities through the year

Cons

The only possible negative is that tennis is challenging to learnl

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