Group courts tennis revival

Press Release

A group interested in re-establishing tennis courts in Fort Frances held an inaugural meeting last Wednesday at the Memorial Sports Centre.
The committee agreed to operate under the interim name of “Fort Tennis Courts Committee” until a formal one is selected.
The committee has a diverse and strong skills representation from within the community, with Rick Wiedenhoeft serving as chairperson and Bob Tkachuk as co-chair.
The mission/mandate of the committee is “to enhance opportunities to promote healthy living through the creation of an outdoor multi-use facility with tennis as the primary activity.”
Fort Frances has a long tennis history dating back to the 1950s, when two courts were constructed adjacent to the courthouse.
They were in use until replaced in the 1960s with the establishment of three courts at the old Fort Frances High School on First Street East.
These courts subsequently were replaced in the mid-1970s with the construction of four courts at the southeast corner of the Memorial Sports Centre property.
Unfortunately, there have not been tennis courts in Fort Frances since April, 2009, when these last four were shut down due to public health and safety concerns.
That site is now the parking lot of the Fort Frances Public Library Technology Centre.
Tennis is a hot and growing sport in Canada due, in large part, to the success and popularity of Canadian tennis stars Milos Raonic and Eugenie Bouchard.
The next steps for the committee are to explore funding options and potential locations.
It also will approach the Northwest Catholic District School Board, the Rainy River District School Board, and the Town of Fort Frances for interest in establishing partnerships.
The group’s next meeting will be held Monday, Nov. 3 at 7:30 p.m. in the upstairs auditorium at the Memorial Sports Centre.