Milford Indoor Tennis rallies for rescues

The Milford Indoor Tennis Club will hold a fund-raiser Jan. 17 to benefit dogs in need of homes.

Lindsay Phillips, manager of the Milford Indoor Tennis Club, adopted Maybelline, a bulldog, beagle and cathoula leopard mix, after the dog had been abandoned in the woods and rescued by Phillips' friend Olivia Cavaliere.

Two of the Milford Indoor Tennis Club tennis pros have also adopted rescue dogs: Carrie Bunton's dog, Owen, is a boxer/German shepherd mix from Tennessee and Paul Coorssen has a bull mastiff, Blue, and an old English bulldog, Rosie, who were both rescued from a shelter in St. Albans, Vermont.

This year, when Toni D'Agostino, the junior program coordinator at the club, makes her annual trip to Orlando to run in the Jan. 11 Race for a Cure at the Epcot Center, an event that raises funds for breast cancer research but also enables participants to raise funds for a charity of their choice, she will be running for Running for Rescues.

A non-profit organization, Running for Rescues is dedicated to saving the lives of shelter animals around the country.

D'Agostino's decision inspired Phillips to create a fundraising event for shelter animals at the Milford Indoor Tennis Club. “I was trying to think of a way we could help. Since we're a tennis club, we came up with the concept of Rally for Rescues,” Phillips said.

The Milford Indoor Tennis Club Rally for Rescues event will include a junior and adult fundraising component. Fourteen junior players participated from Dec. 13 to 18, counting how many rallies they completed in their clinic sessions during the six-day period. They signed up sponsors whose donations were based on the number of times the players hit the ball over the net during rallies. The players then kept track of their rallies and tallied them up at the end of the week. Sponsors could also donate a set amount for the junior player to participate in the event.

On Jan. 17, the Milford Indoor Tennis Club will host a Rally for Rescue tennis party for adults at its facility at 580 Bridgeport Avenue, Milford. The event will include a round robin tennis tournament, food and refreshments.

“All the money raised from this party will be added to the funds raised by the kids, and we'll send a check to Running For Rescues,” Phillips said. “These animals deserve to live and to be placed in homes where they will be loved and cared for, and we're thrilled that we can help make this happen.”

The fee to play in the Rally for Rescues event is $30 per person, and participants do not need to be club members. Those interested in participating may call the Milford Indoor Tennis Club at 203-876-1776 for more information.