Columbus Classic 2019 - A Master Series Event

Registration opens:
Mon, 2019-01-28
Tournament Start Date:
Fri, 2019-05-03
Tournament End Date:
Sun, 2019-05-05
Court Surface:
Hosted Housing:
Contact details:

Mark Buckingham

(614) 425-2221 or Facebook

Tournament Info:


Registration closes: Saturday, April 27, 2019. 

Deadline to Withdraw and Receive a Refund: Saturday, April 27, 2019 by 10pm (EDT). 

FEES: One event $110 / Two events $120 You may elect to pay with either a check or money order (made payable to "Columbus Classic"). Payment may be mailed to:

COLUMBUS CLASSIC, 1165 Tillicum Drive, Columbus, Ohio, 43085

Please note, your tournament entry is not complete until your payment is received in full!

We are thrilled to host Columbus' 8th edition of this GLTA event in 2019! Our tournament has been nominated previously for BEST GLTA SMALL TOURNAMENT and/or BEST GLTA SMALL TOURNAMENT STAFF too (we are the Susan Lucci of the GLTA Awards)! The event will be the first Midwest option for 2019 in the GLTA calendar. Consolation matches will be offered for singles and doubles, weather permitting and based on court availability. Free entry certificates must be validated and received within five (5) calendar days of registration.



Please note the following . . .

1.) For the first-time ever, we are offering women's only, singles divisions. Women may opt to play in either the menss or women's singles division (but cannot register for both). If less than four women register for any singles division, they may move to the men's singles draw or withdraw.

2.) To ensure that the tournament runs efficiently, the total number of players will be limted to 100. Do not wait to register at the last minute! Remember, your registration is not complete until payment is received in full or if you have notified and presented the Tournament Director your free entry certificate you may have won.



As a special bonus offer, as you go through the registration process and get to the checkout, you may opt to get discounted tickets to the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium. This world class attraction is perfect for those who are staying an extra day or two in Columbus, or have a tennis widow/children that get bored easily.

And as always, hugs are FREE!



Because our committee members were around for the Last Supper, we have brought back the 40+ age divisions for Open, A, B, C & D Singles! For our players that are of the age of 40 or older, you may opt to compete in this singles division. In order to make the draws work, we must have a minimum of four (4) players in each respective singles division. If less than four (4) players register for a particular 40+ division, those players registered will be placed in the main draw. If you were born during the first part of the Carter administration or before . . . or remember watching the Donny & Marie on network television . . . odds are your qualify for this option.



Cambria Suites of Polaris has returned to be our host hotel. It is located at 9100 Lyra Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43240. Room rate is $129 per evening. Reservations must be made by April 3, 2019 in order to receive this rate. Simply book online by clicking here.  The hotel is located six (6) miles from the tennis center and fourteen (14) miles to downtown Columbus. The hotel is located across from Polaris Fashion Place mall, a movie theater, bowling alley, Ikea, Dick's Sporting Goods, Top Golf and a parade of local & chain resturants.


We do have host housing available on a limited basis. If interested, please contact Mark Buckingham for arrangements ( Please make certain to inform Mark of any special needs or allergies you might have and he will do the best he can to accommodate. A fully stocked liquor cabinet DOES NOT constitute a "special need". : )  UPDATE: We have filled all of our Host Housing slots.  Unfortunately we will not be able to accomodate any further requests.


This year, we return to the fabulous Hollywood Casino on Saturday, May 4th. The casino is located at 200 GEORGESVILLE ROAD, COLUMBUS, OH 43228. The last time we were here, it seemed like many of you won some coins . . . so let's do it again! Food & presentations will be held at the Epic Buffet. Cocktail hour will start at 7pm and food will begin at 8pm. We will have fabulous raffle offerings and a special, surprise guest! If casinos are not your thing, we will host a special dinner at the Polaris Grill on Friday, May 3rd at 8pm. If you opt for this, you cannot attend the Hollywood Casino function. Please contact mark Buckingham ( with questions or to place this special reservation.


We will also offer lunch on Friday & Saturday at the Wickertree Tennis Club. Complimentary snacks (fruit, bagels, Cheryl's cookies and other nibblets) will be provided all three days. We will also offer complimentary soda products. However, to cut back on waste, we will not offer bottled water. Please bring your own water bottle. Sports and energy drinks will be available for a $1 suggested donation. Money raised from the sale of these beverages will go to a surpise non-profit (to be named at the banquet).

GLTA friend Josh Thompson will return as our massage therapist.  Many of us know Josh from the GLTA circuit.  He will be available with a private room at Wickertree Tennis Center during the day.  He is also available for off-site calls by reservation only.  Please see Josh for further information.



If you have yet to visit Columbus, we have a delightful section of our downtown area affectionately referred to as the "Short North". This mile-long stretch is the hot spot for the city, filled with restaurants, bars, art galleries, boutiques and nightclubs, many of which are LGBTQ friendly. Union Cafe, nestled in the heart of our Short North, will once again host our Columbus Classic Welcome Party on Thursday, May 2 from 6-8pm. In addition to video screens, two full-service bars and dinner menu, they also have an outstanding patio that is perfect for people watching and heckling. You can pick-up your welcome bag and goodies at this time. Look for us toward the back of the bar near the VJ booth.



Once again, the fabulous children of Buddy Up Tennis shall be the main beneficiary of the Columbus Classic. Buddy Up Tennis is a non-profit organization that strives to teach the sport of tennis to kids who have Autism and Down Syndrome. Buddy Up Tennis was originated in Columbus by Beth Gibson. In the past nine years, Buddy Up Tennis has expanded to 20 different cities, including the cities of our GLTA sister toruanemnts in Cincinnati, Chicagoland and Orlando.

We invite you to attend and participate in a special on-court demonstration by the kids from Buddy Up Tennis between 11am-12noon on Saturday, May 4!

GLTA Board Representative:


Match Format:

MATCH FORMAT: All main draw matches will be best two out of three sets, regular scoring with 12 point tiebreakers (first to 7 points by two) played at six games all. **A third set supertiebreak (first to 10 points by two) will be used in lieu of a full third set UNTIL the finals. All Finals (Singles, Doubles, and Consolation) matches will be a full 2 out of 3 sets. Match format modifications may be made at the discretion of the tournament committee due to weather, temperature or time related constraints.

CONSOLATION: Consolation play will be offered to singles players who lose their first singles and/or doubles match. Play will begin on Saturday morning. Depending on the number of participants, consolation play could be held at a site seperate from Wickertree Tennis Club. Match format will be eight game pro sets with no-ad scoring. At seven games all a 12 point tiebreak will be played. Consolation finals will be best two out of three set matches. All we ask is your patience during Consolation play, especially with doubles, as certain players still could be involved with round robin play in another event.

DIVISIONS, DRAW SIZE & GUIDLINES: The Columbus Classic will accommodate as many players as feasible, but the draw will be limited to 100 players. Divisions and draws may be consolidated if an insufficient number of participants register for a particular division. The Columbus Classic may reassign any participant to a higher division if past results justify such a move. All draws will be single elimination. Players are allowed to play split divisions. No player may play down more than one level from his or her highest ranking. Please note if you are playing split divisions, we will make every effort to schedule your matches appropriately, however, like all players you may be required to play on the minimal rest period, 30 minutes prior to singles and 15 minutes prior to doubles.

It is the sole responsibility of each player to enter the division most appropriate for his or her ability. When in doubt about which division is most appropriate for you, enter the higher division. Once play has begun, players observed playing in a division too low for his or her ability will be disqualified at the sole discretion of the tournament committee. Divisions Open-Highly Advanced Players NTRP rating of 5.0 or above, A-Advanced Players NTRP rating of 4.5, B-High Intermediate Player NTRP rating of 3.5-4.0, C-Low Intermediate Player NTRP rating of 3.0, D-Beginning Player NTRP rating 2.5.

Please see the club website at for host hotel information, sign-in party, tournament banquet and local attractions.

WAIVER: In conjunction with my participation in the Columbus Classic and related activities and events, I agree to waive any and all rights and claims for bodily or emotional injury, injury to my reputation, and/or other damages or harms that I might suffer, or any other claims of any nature I may have against the Columbus Classic committee, the Columbus Metropolitan Tennis Organization (CMTO), Wickertree Tennis Club, the Gay and Lesbian Tennis Alliance (GLTA) and their officers, or any organization, facility or individual associated with this tournament. I also waive any and all rights to claim from the Columbus Classic organizing committee, CMTO or GLTA, their officers or any organization or individual, damages or remuneration, which may arise as a result of reference to or photographs of me which may appear in a publication or other media coverage.

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