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Stop neglecting our tennis courts

LETTER TO THE EDITOR


The world of tennis in our cherished CVE community, notably the facilities, has been on a steady decline. In fact, recently the CVE tennis community has been in continuous mourning: the loss of one Master Management court (Tilford) converted to pickleball, the defacing of two courts at Swansea converted to mixed-use with pickle ball, the defacing of Ventnor and Newport courts converted to mixed-use with basketball, the disappearance of court clocks throughout, the loss of the Richmond area where the CVE Tennis Club hosted its popular Jamborees, the installation of blinding pétanque lights at Clubhouse courts, CenClub banning ball machines, incredibly now even to hard courts, and the general decline of facilities due to wear-and-tear and maintenance gaffes.

There have been no additions nor any major improvements or upgrades. The bare minimal maintenance of the remaining facilities, and even minute but critical items, like fixing a $12 broken net strap, is an excruciatingly slow process that takes months, and, in some cases, even years, and only when reported many times by many users. There doesn’t appear to exist any regular upkeep or preventative maintenance program.

Instead, we have a “wait-until-it-breaks-and-wait-longer-to-repair-it” approach. The tennis courts are even used by families playing soccer or hockey, pickleball players taking advantage of Club House lights at night, and even by a man who regularly uses the Richmond courts for practicing his softball throws (all while CVE security drives by without blinking). I’ve even seen a person “walking” her dog on the Richmond “grass” courts.

The tennis facilities are where the governing bodies turn to do other activities, budget cuts and additions or improvements to other facilities, without ever consulting tennis players. Furthermore, it appears that in addition to being victims of gross negligence, the tennis installations are falling prey to nasty politics. Extremely simple and cheap or free fixes to crucial and sometimes hazardous court components are indefensibly left unattended for a very long time, or forever.

For a resident whose main activity is tennis and who pays CenClub and Master Management dues diligently month after month, this is extremely frustrating, disheartening and depressing. I wish that politics were put aside and that there was as much pride in our tennis facilities as there is for other manicured-multiple-times-daily facilities like the spectacular mini-golf, the fabulous pools, and the wonderful Clubhouse.

Even with the advent of the more convenient pickleball, tennis is still flourishing around the world. Meanwhile, at CVE, tennis is being smothered to death by management.


Pierre Graveline


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