Our Story

When Twin Cities businessman Fred Wells signed up for tennis lessons at the age of 65, he realized a tennis court could provide powerful lessons like sportsmanship, perseverance and hard work.  Fred conceived a powerful vision: offer tennis and life skill development opportunities to inspire youth from under-resourced communities to be successful on and off the court.  Fred Wells Tennis & Education Center, also known as The Fort, opened in 2002 realizing Wells’ dream of affordable courts, accessible junior and adult tennis programs and innovative youth outreach programs all packed into one top-notch St. Paul tennis facility.  Since The Fort began serving the Twin Cities, we have worked to increase and refine our offerings every year.  On the 10th anniversary, we were rewarded for Wells’ visionary thinking and our hard work with several prestigious awards: 2011 USTA National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) Chapter of the Year, USTA Member Organization of the Year and PTR Facility of the Year. In 2013, Tennis Magazine honored our ground-breaking programs by featuring us in its “Heroes Issue.”

Our Facility

Services

The Fort also offers court rentals and racquet stringing!

For court rentals contact Reid Olsen at reid@fwtec.org
For stringing contact Dan Swanson at dan@fwtec.org

Patron Fees

  • Junior: $55/year
  • Senior (55+): $55/year
  • Senior Couple: $85/year
  • Individual: $90/year
  • Family: $99/year
  • Guest Fee: $5/visit

Rates

  • Court Rates: $28/hour
  • Ball Machine Rental: $5
  • Hopper of Balls: $5
  • Adult Drill 1.5 hours: $24
  • Adult Drill 1 hour: $16
  • USTA Matches (Patron): $12
  • USTA Matches (Non-Patron): $15

 

Rental Policies

The Fort accepts cash, check, MasterCard, Visa, and Discover.

Patrons may reserve courts up to 7 days in advance starting at 6am.

Non-patrons may reserve courts the day of play.  Payment is required at the time the reservation is made.

24-hour notice is required in the event of a cancellation or full court/drill fee will apply.

Reservations are first come, first served.

The Fort is available for group rentals of up to 125 guests.  For more information call Reid Olsen at 612-252-8367, ext. 111

Policies

GENERAL POLICIES

 

  • All players and patrons must check-in with the front desk.
  • Tobacco use and Alcohol are prohibited in the tennis center. FWTEC is a drug-free zone.
  • Food & beverages (except water) are not allowed on the courts.
  • No glass on the tennis courts.
  • Only tennis shoes (non-marking shoes) are allowed on the courts.
  • Shirts must be worn at all times.
  • Spectator seating on end-court bleachers and lobby area only.
  • Pets are not allowed.
  • Private tennis instruction can ONLY be taught by FWTEC certified Tennis Professional.

ETIQUETTE POLICIES

FWTEC expects all staff, players and volunteers to demonstrate good sportsmanship and respect for one another at all times. 

  • FWTEC does not tolerate foul, abusive or derogatory language, racquet throwing, or ball abuse. Exhibiting any of these poor behaviors will be asked to leave the court by management.
  • Please arrive on time and wait in the lobby until your scheduled court time. Before your court time is up, gather gear and leave promptly so as not to interfere with the next scheduled users of the court.
  • Do not walk onto your court until the designated time. To get to your court, please use the designated walkway. Do not walk across courts.
  • Locker room is available to all patrons. Please remove all your personal belongings after using it. Do not leave any valuables in the locker room. FWTEC is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
  • Workout room is to be used while waiting for a participant in a class or 1 hour before or after a court reservation.

Understand the Rules of Tennis:   

      https://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Game/Rules/

Our Board

Rick Rinkoff Board President Chair, Capital Campaign Director of Research, Craig-Hallum Capital Group

Rick Rinkoff
Board President
Chair, Capital Campaign

Director of Research, Craig-Hallum Capital Group

Santosh Krishnan Tresurer Chair, Finance committee Retired, Edgilent

Santosh Krishnan
Tresurer
Chair, Finance committee

Retired, Edgilent

Thomas Judd Secretary Attorney, Morrison Sund

Thomas Judd
Secretary

Attorney, Morrison Sund

Melissa Dalum Realtor, Bold Marketing  

Melissa Dalum

Realtor, Bold Marketing

 

Visala Goswitz Chair, Development Committee Attorney, Westman, Champlin and Koehler

Visala Goswitz
Chair, Development Committee

Attorney, Westman, Champlin and Koehler

Sue Gregor Chair, Education Committee Retired, Educator

Sue Gregor
Chair, Education Committee

Retired, Educator

John Ahern Chair, Building & Facilities Committee Vice-President, TKDA

John Ahern
Chair, Building & Facilities Committee

Vice-President, TKDA

Michelle Mingo Chair, Capital Campaign Vice President, Mingo Holdings LLC

Michelle Mingo
Chair, Capital Campaign

Vice President, Mingo Holdings LLC

Keith Radtke Partner, Faegre Baker Daniels

Keith Radtke

Partner, Faegre Baker Daniels

James C. Vaughan Agent, Minneapolis-St. Paul Agency

James C. Vaughan

Agent, Minneapolis-St. Paul Agency

Our Team

Esther Tsai Executive Director esther@fwtec.org

Esther Tsai
Executive Director
esther@fwtec.org

Christine Nickels Assistant Executive Director Director of Education & Partnerships christine@fwtec.org

Christine Nickels
Assistant Executive Director
Director of Education & Partnerships
christine@fwtec.org

Robin Coverdale Director of Tennis robin@fwtec.org

Robin Coverdale
Director of Tennis
robin@fwtec.org

Reid Olsen Director of Operations reid@fwtec.org

Reid Olsen
Director of Operations
reid@fwtec.org

Clay Sollenberger Director of Junior Tennis clay@fwtec.org

Clay Sollenberger
Director of Junior Tennis
clay@fwtec.org

Kaitlin King Development Manager kaitlin@fwtec.org

Kaitlin King
Development Manager
kaitlin@fwtec.org

Richard Buckles Accounting Manager richard@fwtec.org

Richard Buckles
Accounting Manager
richard@fwtec.org

Dan Swanson Stringing and Facilities Manager dan@fwtec.org

Dan Swanson
Stringing and Facilities Manager
dan@fwtec.org

Brad Ferg Front Desk Associate brad@fwtec.org

Brad Ferg
Front Desk Associate
brad@fwtec.org

Brian Grossman Front Desk Associate brian@fwtec.org

Brian Grossman
Front Desk Associate
brian@fwtec.org

Zekeria Nigatu Front Desk Associate zekeria@fwtec.org

Zekeria Nigatu
Front Desk Associate
zekeria@fwtec.org

Jackson Buchanan Front Desk Associate jackson@fwtec.org

Jackson Buchanan
Front Desk Associate
jackson@fwtec.org

Judy Long TennisWorks Stars Coordinator Tennis Instructor judy@fwtec.org Certifications:

Judy Long
TennisWorks Stars Coordinator
Tennis Instructor
judy@fwtec.org

Certifications:

David Yanagita Tennis Instructor TennisWorks Coach david.yanagita@fwtec.org Certifications:

David Yanagita
Tennis Instructor
TennisWorks Coach
david.yanagita@fwtec.org

Certifications:

David Stingley Tennis Instructor TennisWorks Coach daivd.stingley@fwtec.org Certifications: PTR 11 to 17 - Professional

David Stingley
Tennis Instructor
TennisWorks Coach
daivd.stingley@fwtec.org

Certifications: PTR 11 to 17 - Professional

Nguyen Vo Junior Player Development Coordinator TennisWorks Coach nguyen@fwtec.org Certifications:

Nguyen Vo
Junior Player Development Coordinator
TennisWorks Coach
nguyen@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Craig Gordon Tennis Instructor craig@fwtec.org Certifications:

Craig Gordon
Tennis Instructor
craig@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Mike Lunka Tennis Instructor michael@fwtec.org Certifications:

Mike Lunka
Tennis Instructor
michael@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Aaron Holland Tennis Instructor aaron@fwtec.org Certifications:

Aaron Holland
Tennis Instructor
aaron@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Luke Elifson Tennis Instructor TennisWorks Coach luke@fwtec.org Certifications:

Luke Elifson
Tennis Instructor
TennisWorks Coach
luke@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Christian Maki Tennis Instructor christian@fwtec.org Certifications:

Christian Maki
Tennis Instructor
christian@fwtec.org

Certifications:

Viet Pham High Performance Tennis Instructor viet@fwtec.org Certifications:

Viet Pham
High Performance Tennis Instructor
viet@fwtec.org

Certifications: