Banana Open ready for action despite incoming storm

mmccombs@islandpacket.comJune 7, 2013 

Tournament director Jackie Reynecke isn't worried about how the rain from tropical storm Andrea will affect the 34th annual Banana Open this weekend at the Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center.

"When I see it, is when I'll handle it," Reynecke said. "We don't talk about rain around here."

The matches are slated to start at 3 p.m. Friday and run all day Saturday and begin again Sunday after lunch.

There are 160 players entered in this year's event, down only slightly from the "170 or so" that played in last year's tournament.

"I consider 20 on either side of what we had the year before to be pretty good," Reynecke said.

Almost a third -- 52 -- of the players in the draw are coming from out of town to play in the event.

"If I have to enter a bunch of new people in the computer," Reynecke said, "I know they're not my locals."

The tournament is part of a series. The winner and runner-up in each division in all 11 Banana Open events in five states earns an invitation to compete in the 28th Banana Open Challenge to be held Oct. 4 to 6 at the Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center.

This year's Banana Open is a benefit for the Honor Our Heroes Foundation, an organization founded by CrossFit HHI's Jake Walsh that, according to its web page, is "committed to alleviating veterans' stress and honoring their enduring sacrifices."

At 6 p.m. Friday, there will be a silent auction and a 50-50 raffle to benefit the foundation. Among the items up for bid are gift certificates for area restaurants and entertainment, as well as private tennis lessons.

CrossFit HHI will demonstrate the workout of the day (WOD), as well. While tournament entries are closed, athletes are still welcome to sign up for the WOD.

The event is open and free to the public.

Details: Contact Jackie Reynecke at the Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center Pro Shop at 785-1152 or email For more on CrossFit HHI, email For more on the Honor Our Heroes Foundation, visit

The 34th Annual Banana Open

Friday-Sunday, Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center

Cost: Free to the public

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