Jon Marc Jagush served a soft shot into the Parks and Recreation Commission’s court Tuesday night.
After commending members for the spaces and fields they maintain for children, he mentioned another recreation area that “I need a little help with.” Describing himself as a “passionate” tennis player, he soon took out not a racquet and ball from his bag, but grass clippers, for one, to demonstrate the tools he brings with him to the Treadwell Park tennis courts, which are “a mess,” he said. He also brings chalk for lines that have worn away, and asked why fencing and nets had been removed.
Chairman Edward Marks asked Mr Jagush if he had been to the Dickinson courts, which had been completely rebuilt in recent years. “Yes,” Mr Jagush said, but asked why the Treadwell courts were not being saved and salvaged. He had inquired about the courts last year also, he reminded commission members. He was not asking for new courts, just improvements — fencing, nets, and repainted lines —he said. “Tennis is a great sport, a game that can be enjoyed by all — and all ages,” he said.
“We have good news for you,” said Parks and Recreation Director Amy Mangold.
To Mr Jagush member Jan Brookes added, “We’re on your side.”
Parks & Rec has funds available and is ready to soon seek bids for building new courts, but did not want to do any preparatory work that might interrupt the summer camps, which have recently ended. Funds for the new courts are slated for the year 2013-14 as a Treadwell Park improvement at $498,000, and is in the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for this year. Parks & Rec aims to have bids go out in September, begin work this fall, and welcome players onto new courts the following spring.
“I want the bids out, and would love to see new courts in the spring,” Ms Mangold said.
“Our fervent hope is to have courts ready in the spring,” Mr Marks said. He also mentioned consulting recreation staff to see what might be done now as a stop-gap, he said. Mr Marks also stressed several times that weather could be a factor delaying their timeline, saying they can’t promise courts will be done in the spring.