Public park of the year: Peter Igo Park
Ten years ago, the 17-acre Peter Igo Park abutting Green Harbor River in Marshfield, Mass., had deteriorated from neglect. Enter the Friends of Peter Igo Park, a group of tennis enthusiasts-turned-fundraisers. Their newly designed, handicapped-accessible facility with enhanced programming has earned Tennis Industry’s Public Park of the Year Award.
Sam Gaeddert, the USTA New England tennis service representative for Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts, says the organization “focused on the right intentions throughout the design and construction process.”
As a result of fundraising activities, in addition to a $40,000 USTA facilities grant, the Friends of Peter Igo Park oversaw the installation of four short tennis courts along with three regulation-sized courts and an adjacent multi-purpose area. Basketball and street hockey courts are also fenced and lighted, and plans are in place to add wheelchair tennis programs and outdoor fitness stations. Volunteers provide maintenance park-wide.
“Along with the beautiful surroundings, the location is safe, easily accessible, free to use and offers a variety of functions for a variety of people,” Gaeddert says. “Any community would be lucky to have a facility like Peter Igo Park.”
According to Bud Duksta, president of the Marshfield Tennis Club and chairman of the Friends of Peter Igo Park, its tennis-playing membership has grown to 100. Today, all 10 instructors of the club’s “University of Tennisology” programs are certified by the PTR or USPTA.
“One of our greatest accomplishments is building a place in which people take pride,” he says. “Now we want to get more people into tennis so this place really rocks and rolls.” — Cindy Cantrell
Tips for Success
- Don’t go it alone. The Marshfield Tennis Club partners with the local recreation department, YMCA and boys and girls club, while maintaining relationships with the town’s police and public works departments.
- Put your money where your racquet is. The Marshfield Tennis Club pays for its pros’ successful certification.
- Think ahead. In preparation for a wheelchair tennis program, the Friends of Peter Igo Park negotiated a discount and obtained a grant to purchase two sports wheelchairs.
See all articles by Cynthia Cantrell
About the Author
Cynthia Cantrell is a contributing editor of Tennis Industry magazine.
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