The Town of Apex in the past few years has built a strong relationship with several tennis organizations.
Those relationships are paying off in a big way.
The town recently received $41,000 in grants for the repair and restoration of the Apex Community Park courts.
The United States Tennis Association ($18,000), the USTA North Carolina ($20,000) and the Western Wake Tennis Association ($3,000) made the donations during last week’s town council meeting.
Those same organizations also funded court improvements at Kelly Road Park two years ago.
“They have been great partners with us,” said Apex Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources Director John Brown.
The town had been planning some short-term repairs to the Community Park courts but can now make much more substantial upgrades.
“It’s fun to do this,” USTA NC representative Kelly Gaines told town leaders. “Your courts will last a long time.”
The town’s recreational program manager Karl Lyons said tennis programs are growing in popularity and the extra funding will help meet the needs of the community.
“These repairs have been needed for a long time,” said Lyons. “We have a lot of interest in our tennis programs and this is going to help us. We’re really excited about it.”
The town runs tennis lessons throughout the year and usually fills each class to capacity.
Lyons said the town’s tennis instructors, Dan Swan and Steve Walker, have played key roles in the success of the programs.
“Dan and Steve deserve a lot of the credit,” said Lyons. “People really like them and they do a great job.”
The upgrades at Kelly Road Park included transitioning the court dimensions to allow 8-and-under players. That led to a marked increase in children becoming involved in the sport.
Now, with the improvements slated for the courts at Community Park, the town hopes for more adult involvement as well.
“We are really hoping these courts will attract the eye of adult players,” said Lyons. “Some of the USTA teams from Apex don’t play here. They go to other towns to play. We hope the word will spread throughout the community about what we are doing and hopefully these players will stay here in Apex.”