Demolition at Lions tennis courts clears way for resurfacing

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 - 10:53
  • The tennis courts at Eagle River Lions Park are being resurfaced this summer. (Matt Tunseth / Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Demolition work has begun at the Eagle River Lions Park tennis courts, and backers of a plan to renovate the courts have started an online fundraiser to help pay for the project.

Project coordinator Ken McCarty believes the restored tennis (and pickle ball) courts will be an asset to the community.

“It’s not about tennis only,” McCarty wrote in an email to potential supporters. “Currently we have many people struggling to identify purpose in their lives. Recognition of existence is a primary element of self. Community centers and activities illicit fulfillment of one of our basic needs. Too many today are lost, wandering, sedating feelings through substances, and making poor choices.”

The old courts were overgrown with weeds, riddled with cracks and had several small trees growing up through them.

McCarty has started a campaign called “Ken’s campaign for Eagle River Lions Foundation.” Although the first phase of the project is limited to resurfacing the dilapidated courts, McCarty would ultimately like to build an all-weather roof over the courts.

The first phase of the project needs money or material for new seating, new nets, new posts, wind screen netting, paint, base material and asphalt.

At the Eagle River Bear Paw Festival, McCarty said he’s hoping to cut costs by finding a good source of donated materials for the initial resurfacing project, which McCarty estimates will cost about $50,000.

In addition to hosting racquet sports, McCarty said the new courts will also be designed to support concerts and other community events.

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