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From Courts to Cocktails:  The Apres Edition

From Courts to Cocktails: The Apres Edition

by Katy

Who doesn’t love to celebrate a big match win (or commiserate over the dreaded loss) with a sweet summer cocktail or a perfectly curated mocktail? Post-match festivities have become as important to the players as the sport itself. It can be as simple as sharing a single glass of wine or as elaborate as a full spread buffet with specialty drinks galore. Either way, the relationships that can sometimes be tested on the courts can usually be mended quickly once everyone has settled into the second part of the evening and started to enjoy the opportunity to win(e)d down after an evening of competition.  

The Rhinehart Family in 2017

After our family moved to Carmel, Indiana, in 2017, I didn’t know a soul. I had previously started trying to get into tennis as an adult, but life got in the way. With my husband’s encouragement, I was finally ready to give it another try. What I found was a similar group of women who were looking for a way to exercise and compete, while also ready to make new friends and memories. What started out as a friendly clinic quickly became a team. The intensity of the clinics and matches drew us in, but we especially looked forward to the end when we would gather together and begin the next part of the evening. We discussed matches and matchups, wins and losses, and strategies (or lack thereof). But at some point as the sun began to set, the conversations would turn to our other life experiences, family stories, career aspirations, and more. As a matter of fact, the idea of Baseline Social was born on the edge of the local high school bleachers after a tennis match and over a chilled glass of wine.  


Friendships were made, and bonds were formed. On the rare occasion that one of our beloved pros hung around with us, we got to hear stories of the “way back when” of their tennis glory days, and it gave us new insight into their lives on and off the court; often, only knowing it’s time to call it a night when the sprinklers began to water the dusty clay courts. Many times, we brought husbands into the mix and hosted evening pickleball matches with full dinners afterwards. And who can forget that time when we were “politely” asked to turn down our 90s hip-hop because the young couple in the club tent were about ready to say their wedding vows? The evenings were full of energy, fun, and laughter; and now, as our children get older, I hope they too can join in the excitement -- as long as they still let us choose the music!


Teams change, friendships evolve, and expectations shift. But at the end of the day, the memories and bonds made off the court are often just as important as the ones made on it. And as the days become longer and warmer weather approaches, I can almost hear the shouts of celebration and the clinking of glasses.  


Cheers to that.

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