The USTA and Newark Mayor Corey Booker announced two weeks ago the reopening of a renovated Jesse Allen Park. The renovated park features tennis courts of three sizes, including full-size courts (78’), and permanent 36’ and 60’ QuickStart* courts. Jesse Allen Park becomes the first public park in the country to house permanent tennis courts of all three sizes and the first park in New Jersey to utilize the QuickStart courts.
The USTA supported the construction of the tennis courts in the park, the second-largest city-owned park in Newark, and the USTA Eastern Section will be an ongoing resource for training tennis instructors and assisting tennis programs in obtaining equipment.
“The USTA is proud to have played a part in the reconstruction of Jesse Allen Park,” said Barry Ford, Director, USTA Outreach & Advocacy. “Our contributions of $25,000 and design and technical advice are part of our long-standing effort to support the growth of tennis programming through the development of qualify public tennis facilities. We commend the mayor, parks department, and the city’s civic leadership for the vision to make the redevelopment of Jesse Allen Park a reality.”
“The USTA is thrilled to be apart of this project,” said Virgil Christian, Director, Community Tennis Development, USTA. “This is just the beginning of tennis becoming more assessable and fun for children. We are interested in partnering with more cities such as Newark to further our goal of growing tennis among this county’s youth.”
Apart from the USTA and the city of Newark, funding for the park’s renovation came from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and the Kresge Foundation. The project was completed in partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newark, Friends of Jesse Allen Park and the Springfield/Belmont Super Neighborhood Council.
* QuickStart Tennis is a new play format that has been developed to help kids 10 and under play the game of tennis. To make the game more accessible to children, several elements have been modified, including the court size, the racquet size, the balls, the scoring system and even the net height.