A Petrolia tennis enthusiast is urging council to take action to make sure the newly refurbished Mary Beach Tennis Courts stay in pristine condition.
This summer, after teen tennis enthusiast Matt Mueller raised $22,000, the town agreed to resurface the court which had been covered in asphalt and had developed large cracks.
David Allen is one of about 40 people now using the courts again. “I want to thank council for the outstanding renovation project for the courts,” he told councillors Monday. “The resurfacing job is phenomenal. It is as good as some of the best courts I’ve played on.”
But Allen says he’s already noticed damage to the surface from people playing ball hockey on it.” There are numerous hockey stick marks and dings on the top of the court.”
So he’s asking council to find a solution.
Allen suggested the west gate be locked allowing entrance to the courts through one gate only. He also believes it should have some sort of a barrier – he suggested a chain – to make it impossible for people to drag a hockey net onto the court.
Allen hinted it might be a good idea for the town to consider building another pad for people to play ball hockey.
He added the town might have to consider locking the court and having a key available for tennis players at the Oil Heritage District Community Centre.
Allen also suggested a couple of small improvements to the court including some mesh at the bottom of the fence to stop balls from rolling away and a bench for players to change their shoes.
“This is a plea as much as a presentation,” says Allen. “If we don’t take protective measures, it’s going to be sad.
“Consider these protective measures; if you do, I think we can insure the facility remains top notch.”
Allen believes because of the project the tennis community will be revived and he’s hoping to see a tennis club form with lessons being offered and leagues set up.