By Donna Thornton/News Editor
Some Thursday afternoons, you can find Etowah County Circuit Judge David Kimberly at an entirely different kind of court.
Kimberly takes his enthusiasm for tennis and shares it with a group of young people from the Boys and Girls Club on Thursdays, at the Gadsden Tennis Complex. Armed with a large bag of practice balls and rackets, Kimberly tosses balls to kids and instructs them in the proper form for hitting the balls back, and he guides them through practice serve after practice serve.
For Kimberly, it was something he thought about doing for year before the tennis clinic ever came into being. He knew there was a need for constructive activities for children, and wanted to help, and he thought working with the Boys and Girls Club would be a good way to reach young people.
With the opening of the new Boys and Girls Club in the old Cory school building, Kimberly had a chance to propose his idea to Director Quez Williams.
“I got to thinking that tennis could be a life-long activity for kids,” Kimberly said – something that can’t be said of all sports. “You can’t play football your whole life.”
Most communities have tennis courts, he said, and the sport is low-cost.
“You can pick up a racket for about $20,” Kimberly said.
“It’s a great life-time sport,” he said. “If you learn how to play, it’s a great way to stay healthy and to stay fit.
“I’m hoping some of these kids will benefit,” Kimberly said, from exposure to and instruction in the sport.
He would be very pleased to see some of the young people he’s working with pursue tennis competitively at their schools, and enjoying some of the doors sports can open for their futures.
The rewards for the children are easy to see. Kimberly finds rewards also.
“I guess I’d just have to say I love the sport,” he said. “I want (to help) as many people as I can to see its lifetime benefits and take it up for themselves.”