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Extreme court makeover gives quick start tennis a quicker start in Nashville

Earlier this year, an apocalyptic rainfall left much of Nashville, Tennessee reeling from the worst floods in memory. Among the submerged were the city’s municipal tennis courts at Centennial Park, but a unique partnership among Community Surfaces, Sport Master and Competition Athletic Surfaces had the tennis center back in operation in 48 hours.

The remarkable makeover was captured on video and edited into a 30-minute documentary that aired this fall on the Tennis Channel. The show captures the flood’s devastation, focusing on the damage to Centennial Tennis Center’s eight courts.

Competition Athletic Surfaces was selected as the contractor to work with Community Surfaces by SportMaster to rehabilitate the courts. Working with Centennial Tennis Center director, Blaine Smith, and a crew of Nashville community volunteers, the team cleaned and rehabbed four of the courts while Competition Athletic Surfaces and SportMaster converted the remaining two courts into eight courts reconfigured for the USTA’s QuickStart format.

Quickstart uses smaller surfaces and balls with less bounce to give children a less daunting introduction to tennis. The conversion from four regulation courts to eight QuickStart was a dream-come-true for Smith, who states at the beginning of the documentary that he doesn’t have enough surfaces to handle all the kids who want to participate.

“Community Surface” host, Touré, and Centennial Tennis Center director, Blaine Smith, survey flood damage before the facility makeover in Nashville. Competition Athletic Surfaces was the contractor selected to construct the new USTA QuickStart surfaces."

Competition Athletic Surfaces president, Lee Murray, who headed up the construction end of the project, wasn’t sure the 48-hour deadline was realistic. “When we walked up and saw the condition of those courts, we realized it was going to be a tall order. But it was the kind of project that you could easily get motivated by, and the looks on the kids faces when they came to play two days later made it all worth it,” Murray said.

Murray applauds the QuickStart conversions, noting the court dimensions create a friendlier environment for children just getting introduced to the sport. “It just seems like logical thing to do for tennis centers that can spare a court or two. Tennis can become more of a family outing, and the instructors can double the number of kids they serve,” said Murray.

The Nashville project adds to Competition Athletic Surfaces’ growing reputation for high-quality installations. The company is already well-known in the collegiate ranks, having surfaces at the University of Tennessee, the University of Alabama, and Mississippi State University.

More information is available at:

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http://www.racquetsportsindustry.com/news/2010/09/tennis_channels_community_surf_1.html
http://www.10sballs.com/2010/08/05/tennis-channel%E2%80%99s-community-surface-to-document-renovation-of-courts-devastated-by-nashville-flood/
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