Steve Duin: No adore for tennis during Portland Parks & Rec

April 21, 2015 - Picnic Time

Somewhere between Creston Park, Mt. Scott Park and a padlocked solitude behind a Jefferson High bleachers, we figured it out.

Somewhere on a unconstrained debate of Portland’s pock-marked, weed-eaten, orphaned monuments to Arthur Ashe and Andre Agassi, we finally relaxed. When it comes to tennis, it isn’t that complicated:

Portland Parks Rec has late from a game. Parks Rec doesn’t caring if city kids have protected places to play tennis, and it doesn’t caring that outside courts are annoying eyesores during dozens of a city’s distinguished parks.

The bureau’s $100 million annual handling budget, and 3,000 “permanent and anniversary employees,” apparently aren’t adequate to keep a uninformed round in play.

And Portlanders, by and large, are curiously excellent with that.

Over a years, there have been task forces and “tennis visions” and a occasional bucket set out to locate a sleet drizzling by a roof during a 42-year-old Portland Tennis Center.

Why, now and then, a city even slips an Argay Park resurfacing plan into a $68 million parks replacement bond to contend a apparition that easterly Portland gets a due.

But Mike Stone, a bureau’s former tennis coordinator, argues that 27 of a city’s 109 outside courts are deserted or unplayable.  Another dual dozen consequence special counsel and a seeing-eye dog if we trust in arguable balance or line calls.

In his 11 years with a city, Stone assures me, his pursuit outline didn’t concede him to coordinate most of anything over repairs control during PTC. He spent time on a city’s open courts (and catalogued them on his website, He done recommendations on a speculation a competition is fair to immature and aged alike, and a public-court network value saving.

“The recommendations went nowhere,” says Scott, now coaching tennis during La Salle Catholic College Preparatory. “That’s one of a reasons we left a city.

“Take Washington Park. How annoying is it during a traveller captivate like Washington Park to have those courts and that fencing? Those promises that a courts would be resurfaced? Jesuit refused to play a compare there since of a conditions of a courts.”

The outside courts during Washington Park are Elysian fields compared to tennis brownfields around a city.

The Creston Park justice on Southeast Foster is, like a tarmac during Jeff, definitely abandoned. At a differently superb heart of Mt. Scott Park, a court’s sagging net is all though destroyed. There’s no such thing as a loyal rebound during Woodstock or Kenilworth or Lents or Rose City.

Are there keepers in a mix? Of course. Gabriel Park … in Southwest. Hamilton Park … in Southwest. Portland Heights … in Southwest.

The renovated showpieces during Berkeley Park, during Southeast Bybee and Cesar Chavez. Of course, those courts – the Alex Rovello Memorial Courts – were totally financed with $150,000 in private donations following Rovello’s genocide in a 2013 diving accident on a McKenzie River.

Jim Rovello played with his son on those courts for 20 years. Best he can recall, he told me Monday, a courts were never resurfaced. Now and then, Parks Rec would come by with a energy washer. That’s it.

When we usually have $100 million to operate, we do what we can.

Wayne Pickard, a tennis manager during a Multnomah Athletic Club, was partial of a city’s 2009 tennis charge force. He remembers a blood, persperate and promises: “I suspicion we done inroads. Within dual years, it was roughly like that thing never happened. It was like magic. In hindsight, we would contend Parks Rec were masters during this. Masters during relocating this thing off to a side.”

Maybe they’re watchful for Nike to uncover up. Didn’t Phil Knight revamp a city’s basketball courts and territory fields? What’s a hold-up, guys, in bringing Portland tennis behind to life?

You’re right. Satire is hard. we don’t know because we bother.

In a meantime, Mark Ross during Parks Rec tells me a business has some-more than $200 million in unfunded maintenance, and there are usually supports accessible to resurface “two or 3 courts each few years.”

In a meantime, there’s a watchful list of some-more than 600 to turn members during a Portland Tennis Center. If a facility’s $1.2 million restoration is using too late to horde a state high-school championships, Ross pronounced Parks Rec will approach any destiny increase to complement improvements.

In a meantime, Stone notes, we can reserve a cruise table on a Parks Rec website, though not an outside tennis court.

And Portlanders — who generally adore sports and a outside — reside this.  They pass new parks holds and trust all is well.  All a while, girl tennis programs suffer, outside courts go to seed – or bike polo – and visitors to the wealthy parks consternation what tennis ever did to Portland to acquire such fast contempt.

— Steve Duin

503-221-8597; @SteveDuin

source ⦿

More picnic ...

› tags: Picnic Time /