Maintenance of clay courts by volunteers has worked at Dewey Park in Omaha, NE for 18 years and at Frick Park in Pittsburgh, PA for 13 years. Both of those organizations have been easily able to keep their courts in superb playing condition for a long period of time with a small number of dedicated volunteers.
Larger work crews of 20 people or more needed for two days a year to open up the courts and prepare them for play in the spring, and to take down the courts in the fall.
Between the spring opening and fall closing, the courts require about two hours a week for maintenance. After playing on the clay court, players sweep the court with a seven foot wide drag broom pulled behind a person as they walk. The lines are also cleaned after playing. Sweeping and cleaning the lines takes about five minutes or less for two people.
We believe that public clay tennis courts will be a unique amenity well into the future and will continue to attract tennis players for generations to come. Since there will always be an interest in these courts from the tennis playing public, there will always be a subset of people from that community that are dedicated enough to the concept that they will lend a hand in caring for the courts.
Organizing and training the current generation of core clay court caretakers is at the core of MCCC's mission, as well as recruiting the next generation. Every Spring, we will have a court opening party to invite new people to learn how to open the court and kick off the playing season. We think this will be a fun annual rite of Spring. In the Fall, we will have a similar court closing event. Those events will be a combination of training and community celebration of the game of tennis and the clay court experience.
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