Tennis courts ready for play

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Five of 10 courts available for use at Freeman Lake Park

By Jeff D'Alessio

In just a little more than five months, a piece of land at Freeman Lake Park has turned into a tennis haven.

On Tuesday night, lights were turned on and Bo O’Brien, the driving force behind a new tennis facility in Elizabethtown, was on the court to check it out.

He was back Wednesday morning, playing for about two hours in a doubles match.

“They look good,” said O’Brien, chairman of the Elizabethtown Tennis Commission. “There’s a real atmosphere out there. It’s a beautiful setting with the lake and the scenery.”

Five of the courts — the ones with lighting — are ready for use. The other five courts should be available for play within the next two weeks as fencing is installed and additional painting of the courts is completed.

There won’t be night play at the courts while Christmas in the Park is under way, which continues through Jan. 1.

O’Brien said the courts are playing slow, almost like clay courts. That is typical, he said, on courts that have just been surfaced. Continued play and weather will quicken the surface.

The city awarded the bid for both design and construction to Jenkins-Essex Construction at a cost not to exceed $1.3 million last December.

The 10 courts will join eight courts at University Drive and four at American Legion Park as city-maintained courts.

“The tennis community is going to be happy they are done,” O’Brien said of the courts. “They really look good.”

O’Brien said the lighting is good on the court and in the areas around the courts.

“The lights focus down on the courts,” he said. “We’ll get a lot of play out there on them.”

Jeff D’Alessio can be reached at (270) 505-1757 or jdalessio@thenewsenterprise.com