Could Ripon someday become the mecca of tennis in the Central Valley?
That’s the hope of Love-Love Ripon Tennis Foundation, in particular, if all goes according to plan.
The local nonprofit is looking at tennis complex at Mistlin Sports Park consisting of 12 tennis courts and a center court with clubhouse.
Part of that dream took a step forward Tuesday as the Ripon City Council directed staff to draft an agreement – a Memorandum of Understanding – between the City of Ripon and the Foundation that the responsibilities between the two agencies in the quest to complete a tennis complex.
“Team work will make the dream work,” said Di Quaresma, who is president of Love-Love Ripon Tennis Foundation.
Alex Lopez, who is the director of the City of Ripon tennis program, sees this dream as an eventual tennis center for the Northern California United States Tennis Association tournament events.
The Foundation has requested that the City, in consideration of the donation, allocate or match $400,000 in funds for the six new tennis courts as part of Phase 1.
The City of Ripon would also be asked to maintain the tennis courts and encourage the development of tennis and USTA tournaments.
Phase 2 would consist of six additional courts while plans for Phase 3 would include the center court and club house.
The City of Ripon had planned for the development of a tennis complex at the Mistlin Sports Park.
Elected leaders applauded the efforts of Love-Love Ripon Tennis Foundation.
“It’s nice when we hear someone say (to us) ‘we should…’,” he said.
The Foundation noted that the old courts at the Ripon Community Center could also be useful, given the growing popularity of pickleball – a mix between tennis, badminton and table tennis, but played with a whiffle ball while using one half the size of a regulation tennis court.“I might be interested in playing pickle ball,” Vice Mayor Mike Restuccia said