Thanks to a $10,000 donation by Jack Sturm, the tennis court at Lindsay Park in Manawa has received a facelift.
“I’ve been a longtime tennis player, in fact, I started playing down here when the courts were first put in probably 20 years ago,” Sturm said. “They deteriorated over time and I thought Manawa should have something at least equivalent to the other cities around us.”
Before making the donation, a quote for the renovation was obtained. Sturm and fellow tennis player, Chuck Jepson, also traveled to New London to look at the resurfaced tennis courts there.
“[We] liked the work we saw and I decided to make the contribution so we could have the same courts here in Manawa,” Sturm said.
The tennis court in Manawa was resurfaced, new fencing was erected, a new net was added and lights will be installed soon. As part of the work, the basketball court next to the tennis court was also resurfaced.
“Just about everything is new,” Jepson said.
Cheryl Hass, clerk/treasurer for the city of Manawa, said the new fencing was paid for by the city of Manawa. She added that the tennis court needed to be redone, but without the donation, it would not have been possible because of the tight city budget.
Sturm and Jepson said there is a core group of area residents who play tennis. In addition to Sturm and Jepson, the group includes: Chris and Karin Haines, Jim Roenz, Dave Augustine, Rick Zemple, Pat and Carmen O’Brien, Stan Forbes, Brenda Arndt, Harry Schaefer, and Bill and Pam Block.
“We’re trying to promote tennis within the city here,” Jepson said. “We have a very nice court here thanks to Jack. When we get the lights up then we will probably have some seminars to get it promoted.”
Jepson said everyone in the group will make a donation of some kind to the tennis court, and the group is willing to teach those interested in learning how to play tennis.
“At our age, we definitely want the youth involved,” Sturm said.
“It’s an opportunity for people to do an activity,” said Debby Nolan, mayor of Manawa. “Not everybody likes to walk. Now they have a chance to come and play tennis. And this gives kids the chance to play basketball.”
The tennis court renovation continues a trend of improvements made to Lindsay Park over the past couple years. Hass said in 2011 a new shelter was built in the park. The location of the old shelter was then turned into a sand volleyball court this spring.
“It’s nice that the courts are located next to the beginning of our walking trail,” Sturm said. “A lot of people use that and they will now see the tennis court.”