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Gullikson, Washington and Gottfried Launch Palm Coast Tennis Center

November 9, 2007 09:58 AM

Gullikson, Washington and Gottfried Launch
Palm Coast Tennis Center

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The City of Palm Coast celebrated the grand opening of its new tennis center, with 10 brand new clay courts on Saturday, November 10.  Tennis stars Tom Gullikson, Brian Gottfried, Malivai Washington and Scott Melville, along with Palm Coast City officials and over 300 tennis enthusiasts, attended the grand opening.  The day’s activities began with opening remarks from the Palm Coast Director of Park and Recreation, John Jackson, followed by open play, a USTA Florida Kids’ Zone and an exhibition doubles match between Gullikson, Gottfried, Mislav Hizak and Melville.

Internationally recognized Global Tennis Design partnered with Welch Tennis Courts on a Design/Build project for the City of Palm Coast.  Global designed the facility for a build-out of 20 courts with three phases. Phase one had ten courts, a small temporary clubhouse and a maintenance building. 

All courts are lighted and sub-surface irrigated to minimize water consumption, reduce maintenance and provide 100% efficiency of use. Phase two and three, if passed by city officials, will add ten more courts and a bigger clubhouse.

The citizens of Palm Coast were instrumental in the addition of the new courts.  Rightly named, Friends of Tennis, they advocated to local leaders about the need of bigger and better tennis facility; and they got it. The facility caters to children, youth and adults, as well as league and local tournament play. The center already has 265 members and 23 GVTL (Greater Volusia Tennis League) teams set to utilize the new tennis hub.

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Ken Obermeier, formerly of Orlando, is the director of tennis at the Palm Coast Tennis Center.

This (center) was built because the community has asked for it," said Ken, who added he was thrilled at the effort and the new center.

Malivai Washington recently had a Tennis Court Dedication Ceremony of his own on Oct. 30 at Emmett Reed Park in Jacksonville.  He mentioned that the general public is where tennis is going to grow.

“When facilities are being erected, that is a good indication of the trend in tennis,” he said.  “If I could do something like come down to Palm Coast to help grow the game of tennis, then I will.”

As the sun shone bright over the tennis courts and music rang through the winds, it was evident that everyone was there for similar reasons: to have fun, celebrate the growth of new tennis facilities and ultimately, to support the cross-generational sport of tennis.

* Special thanks to Lois Markowski, Froukje Mochel, Doreen Davis, Dot Mix, Janice Jennone, Laura Lipsey, Tom Soraci, Tess Mitchell, Margaret Evans, Laura Evans and Peg Mayo who assisted with USTA Florida's Kids' Zone.    


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