GSS Symposium News
This year marks the 5th anniversary of the GSS racquet stringers symposium. Wow have we actually made it to number 5? In the beginning it didn’t seem possible that 5 years after the fact that we would still be standing but here we are, ready to celebrate our 5th year and getting better all the time!
Before I give you some updates here’s some important information about costs. The focus this year is about reducing the overall costs to attend and to that end we’ve put together a couple of things that should go far in helping you save money if you plan to attend. First and most importantly because the deadline is approaching, you need to know that there’s a 10% discount off of the registration fee if you register on or before June 30th so if you’re planning to attend you might want to register soon to take advantage of the discount.
Next is the swag bag that every attendee receives at the Saturday night Meet & Greet session. We’ve had some really nice bags over the last 4 years but I promise you, nothing compares to what’s in store for you this year. We have 4 major sponsors; Babolat, Wilson, Prince, & Gamma that have a nice little surprise waiting for all who attend. You’ll have to be there to see it but here’s a little hint. Registration is $495 per person and with the 10% early bird discount the fee is dropped to $445.50. The retail value of the swag bag is currently estimated at $300 and could very well climb higher before our start date (care to take a guess what’s in the bag?). This means that through our efforts and the generous contributions from our sponsors that close to 75% of your registration fee is coming back to you through retail items that you’ll pick up just for being there! When you attend you’ll have transportation, meals, and lodging to take care of and that’s it. We have nice breakfast carts out each morning for you late risers with bagels and cream cheese, pastries, hot coffee and juice so you can grab something on the fly and make it to the first seminar. That leaves lunch and dinner and with that you have a choice of 5 restaurants on the premises that serve everything from pool side sandwiches and drinks to fine dining at Dempsey’s, the premier eatery at the resort.
Each year we make every effort to keep your costs down and this year I think you can agree that this is the best package yet, plus we’ve got a fantastic facility to really kick back, learn a few things, network with other stringers from around the world, and in general, just have a great time.
I’m sure most of you know by now that we’re going to be at Saddlebrook Resort in Tampa, Florida. This is a superb facility for our event with 40+ tennis courts (all 4 major surfaces), 2 championship golf courses, walking trails, a European spa, swimming pool (of course), and much more. Those of you who have attended in the past and asked about playing tennis will surely be pleased with this facility and should get in all the tennis your heart desire. Rooms are priced starting at $110 per night (not including resort fees or taxes) and we think this is phenomenal pricing for a resort like Saddlebrook. For a complete overview of the symposium go to gssalliance.com/index.php/symposium/symposium-overview. You can also drill down to the other drop down menus of the symposium navigation link to get more details on the event.
This year we have several new seminars as well as new seminar leaders. There’s a total of 9 new seminars this year ranging from badminton & racquetball stringing from Mark Gonzalez of Alpha Racquet Sports, to sessions that explore the loads and stresses on a racquet at all stages of the stringing process by Dr. Richard Zarda from Martin-Marrietta in Orlando. Grant Morgan is going to take you on court, analyze your strokes and with the help of John Gugel, customize your racquet, tweaking it to the point of optimum performance based on what they see when you’re on court hitting balls. The Wilson Patterns & Techniques class is back with Ron Rocchi & Grant Morgan and this was without a doubt the talk of the symposium last year. I’m sure Ron & Grant will figure out a way to make it even better this year — they never disappoint. If you’re a speedster on the stringing machine you’ll be glad to hear that the Prince speed stringing contest is back for the 3rd year and this is always fun for everyone to watch. The schedule has been arranged in such a way to allow you free time on Monday afternoon if you would like a little time for yourself.
Schedule a lesson with the Saddlebrook staff pros, play a round of golf, take a swim, go for a hike, or indulge yourself with a relaxing massage in the European spa. This is your time to relax and take advantage of the many amenities offered by Saddlebrook. We have a round robin scheduled on Monday at 6 p.m. that you can sign up for on the registration form that should be fun for all so be sure to bring your racquet
There you have it. Remember to sign up soon to take advantage of the early bird discount and hopefully we’ll see many of you in Tampa this year!
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