‘In a pickle’: Grand Lake’s resurfaced courts cause rift
July 3, 2017
Bypassing some resistance from the community, the Grand Lake Metropolitan Recreation District began resurfacing its tennis courts late last week, making room for a growing new local sport.
The courts are being resurfaced to better accommodate the town's growing interest in pickleball, a racquet sport played with a wiffle ball and a short net. The resurfacing will create multi-sport courts, creating lines for four pickleball courts built into the tennis courts.
"Pickleball is a fast-growing sport up here; we need to have more pickleball courts tan just two," said Larry Burks, general manager of the Grand Lake Metropolitan Recreation District. "That's what we've decided to do because it's such a growing population. We're just trying to take care of as many facets of our community as we can."
The resurfacing is expected to be finished this week.
A small consideration of tennis players in the county, however, objected to the new design, citing concerns including too many people would be on the courts, lack of adequate parking and alienation of the court's core users — the tennis players.
"It just doesn't make sense to turn it into a multipurpose court; it's destroying the original purpose," commented Cynthia Elliott, who worked with the Grand Lake Tennis Group for years, but who now lives in Loveland. "We have quite a few players who come from all over Granby and Hot Sulphur Springs because it's a lovely venue."
Burks explained that while he understands the concerns of the tennis community, the resurfacing of the courts to become multi-purpose was the most practical solution.
"We're just trying to do what we can for the most people, and serve the most people that we can in our community," Burks said. "Unfortunately, we don't have the funds to go out and buy new pickleball courts, so we have to utilize the courts that we have."