Council urged to refurb tennis courts

Nov. 29, 2012 @ 08:59 PM

Tennis and recreation enthusiast Daniel Young told the Henderson City Council this week that recreation opportunities should be a bigger priority, and opportunities for low-cost improvements should not be overlooked.

Young said that as a Senior Games tennis gold medalist, and a newly appointed member of the Henderson Recreation and Parks Commission, he would suggest refurbishing several tennis courts in the city.

If the existing facilities now unused at E.M. Rollins Elementary School and the Chestnut Street Park were refurbished or converted for tennis use, more people could come from nearby areas to use them.

Young envisions family and mentoring opportunities that could be put in place for little more than the cost of court poles and netting gear.

“Tennis can be a way to earn some self esteem and give you benefits of better health and coordination,” Young told the listening council members on Monday. “At one time, there used to be tennis courts there.”

Young said that many who live in his neighborhood, in west Henderson, don’t have an easy option of walking to a place to play: strolling over to the Fox Pond tennis courts is hardly a possibility. Having courts centrally located in town would be an improvement for the city, he said.

“I would like to get some poles and nets up so we can start playing again,” Young said. “There are many benefits to playing tennis, benefits that last a lifetime. The family that plays together stays together.”

The council expressed agreement with Young’s overall goal.

“It is such an inspiration to see that tennis can do all of this,” Councilwoman Brenda Peace-Jenkins said.

In comments to the Daily Dispatch, he gave his own life story as an example, saying that a gift years ago by his first wife started him on his tennis journey.

“She gave me a racket, a wrist band and a can of tennis balls,” Young said. “That was my first racket, and that’s how I got started.”

Even today, when Young, age 70, wraps up a work day, he can usually be found on a tennis court. He plays five times a week.

Young has been a tennis gold medalist each of the last three years at the state Senior Games in Raleigh. His passions include teaching the sport.

Young founded the National Tennis Teachers College in 1976. A motto of his is: “Teaching tennis the way it ought to be taught.”

His win in the recent Senior Games means he earned a spot in next year’s National Senior Games in Cleveland.

Young said that a set of poles for a tennis court might cost about $250, and there would be construction costs for digging a proper hole.

The construction costs could be mitigated by some volunteering, and there is the possibility that the U.S. Tennis Association, or contacts through them, could provide other help.

Young said he would do some further research on cost issues.

Contact the writer at mfisher@hendersondispatch.com

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