To the Editor:
After viewing comments twice in this column about how numerous and what wonderful shape the tennis courts are in Craig, I feel I must respond. Obviously, only people who are not familiar with the facilities and their use and maintenance could make those comments.
Twenty years ago, Craig had four new courts at the high school, four at Highland Park, two next to the swimming pool and two on Lincoln Street. Over the years, four courts have been made into a skate park (partly due to the poor condition for tennis usage), the four courts at the high school have not been maintained and now are in disrepair and two courts have been paved over for swimming pool parking. That leaves the two Lincoln Street courts out of 12, and those two are currently in need of resurfacing.
As for their usage ... Two of our high school students who play on these courts daily during the spring and summer are now playing their second year on the Steamboat High School team (MCHS has no team and no facilities). They have to be driven to Steamboat for practice by their parents.
Weather permitting, there is a group of professionals who play during their lunch hour four times a week.
And, there are the rest of us who play one to several times per week. You will see some of us diehards playing (sometimes with gloves on) until the snow comes or the nets are taken down, whichever comes first.
I admit usage has been sporadic over the years depending on the ebb and flow of the population who play tennis. However, I have seen as many as a group of 16 playing simultaneously (at the high school when the courts were usable). As recently as this summer, adults have waited several times in the evening for children to finish playing before they could play.
In closing, I cannot speak for the other recreational activities, but I feel the tennis facilities have been low on the priority list. For people who are against the proposed recreation center or prefer other activities to say otherwise, is not correct. In truth, tennis facilities are lacking and do not get adequate maintenance.
Avid tennis player