Welcome to Dover Indoor Tennis

Charles Anyanwu

Coaches Kevin Papen, (Left) Sarah Candeloro, (Middle) & Daniel Brengle (Right) Source: https://www.dovertennis.com 

If you’re looking for a place to formally get a headstart in your tennis career, then Dover Indoor Tennis may be the place for you!

Dover Indoor Tennis is a local indoor tennis facility located in Dover, DE. The facility is open to the public and is home to many local tennis and now pickleball players.

Known to most community members as “The Indoor,” the four-court indoor facility first opened its doors in 1969. However, how Dover Indoor came about is even more intriguing.

According to current Dover Indoor Tennis owner Daniel Brengle, “It was started by tennis players, for tennis players… the Dover tennis community (at the time) got together and said ‘we would really love to have a place to play during the wintertime,” Brengle described. 

Mr. Brengle goes on to further explain the facility’s history and how he and his wife, owner and Coach Gaby Brengle eventually came to own the facility. “The way it (Dover Indoor Tennis) was set up, is tennis players themselves bought shares…And to this day those original shares still reside with those original families still reside with them. Our involvement with it (Dover Indoor Tennis) came from the fact that Gabby’s father, William Vaughn was kind of the buyer of those (remaining) shares…ending up with more shares than anyone else.” said Mr. Brengle.

Daniel and Gaby Brengle didn’t fully commit to the “day to day operation,” of Dover Indoor Tennis until 1994. Mrs. Brengle at the time was running Simon’s Bridal Shop full time, in downtown Dover, DE, which was started by her grandmother. However, it was in 1994 when Mrs. Brengle sold her part of the business to her business partner. After selling it, Brengle with the extra time on her hands, used it to hit with then four-year old daughter and now pro WTA Professional tennis player Madison Brengle at local high schools. 

Post-Match Interview with Serena Williams after Madison Brengle defeats Serena Williams in the Second Round of the 2017 ASB Classic.

According to Mr. Brengle, as a result of Gaby hitting with her daughter Madison, “People would come up to Gaby and say ‘You know, that girl really hits a nice tennis ball. Do you give lessons?.” In turn, after gaining attention and interest, “it planted the seed,” for the Brengle’s to start coaching and giving lessons full time at Dover Indoor Tennis.. 

Essentially since 1994, Gaby and Daniel Brengle, along with other eventual coaching staff like Coach Sarah Candeloro and Coach Kevin Papen, began providing personalized individual and group instruction from kids to adults.

An inside look at the Dover Indoor Tennis facility. Source: MM A March 2018.

With individual instruction at Dover Indoor Tennis, coaches provide tailored lessons to players of any skill level to mold and shape new and existing players into better tennis players and athletes. From basic tennis mechanics and technique to strategy, coaches at Dover Indoor provide a place for tennis athletes to not only play in the cold winter months, but, “we offer a place where people can have that athletic fitness and social activity all in one spot,” Mr. Brengle described.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, “individual private lessons have been very big this year,” Mr. Brengle stated in an interview. The pandemic prevented the Indoor from continuing their more popular group lessons.

With Dover Indoor Tennis open on weekdays from 9am to 10pm and 9am to 5pm on weekends, it continues to provide a place for players and community members to play tennis during the winter season and also during this ongoing pandemic. So, if you’re looking to start playing tennis in the local Dover, DE area, Dover Indoor Tennis may be a great place to start!

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