To celebrate their opening after five years of hard work, the Surrey Tennis Centre is looking to break a Guinness World Record on Saturday, November 28, and they need a million tennis balls to do it.
In recognition of their long-awaited opening, the Surrey Tennis Centre has their sights set on a world record attempt. The plan: the longest tennis ball practice ever attempted. 30 hours, six indoor courts, and one million tennis balls will be in play with a rotating number of players.
“[Guinness] said ‘No, no one has every attempted that,'” says Wallensteen. “We’ve sort of done the numbers, done the math, and we figured that if we have all six of our indoor courts running for 30 hour we’ll get to a million balls.”
The Tennis Centre is the brainchild of Larry Jurovich and Derek Wallensteen. After playing tennis for most of his life, the 29-year-old Wallensteen joined forces with Jurovich to “change the tennis landscape in the Lower Mainland,” by lending a helping hand to tennis prospects and passionate youth, in their pursuit of athletic greatness.
“We’re a very family based centre. It’s completely public, there’s no membership to play at our centre,” Wallensteen told Vancity Buzz. “We’re really big on family values and giving back to the community.”
Wallensteen says one of the values the Tennis Centre hopes to instill in their players is community contribution, so they’re asking everyone who would like to support the cause to donate a minimum of $100 to Relate Church Community Care, to help buy the organization a van. Wallensteen says any support the Tennis Centre can give will go a long way, and is a core tenant of their operations.
“Me personally, I’ve had a lot of people help me along the way. I definitely did not come from a tennis hub in Nanaimo,” he says. “I’ve been really fortunate over the last 10 years to be able to just have an opportunity to pursue tennis… I just want to be able to help kids in the Lower Mainland, and especially in Surrey, be able to reach the highest levels of tennis.”
With doors opening this weekend, Wallensteen says he’s ready to give back to a community that has already done so much for him.
“For me now it’s really important that we’ll be able to find a kid at eight or nine years old and make him a Wimbledon champion,” says Wallensteen. “There’s absolutely no reason why we can’t do that.”