This morning I was out on the road and I passed Tennis Avenue. I’ve seen this street sign many times and I don’t know why I noticed it today. Maybe because I had been telling my husband how I seem to have chosen to set the sunshines in quite a few locations to which people will return in the spring but are not frequenting right now.
So, Tennis Avenue (which by the way, is maybe 7-8 miles from home and has nothing to do with today’s sunshine location except as inspiration) brought me to thinking about tennis courts. Now, I don’t play tennis and I know little about it, but I do know a lot of people are interested in it in my neighborhood – we have several sets of courts within a mile or so of my house and they are well-used. It also fit in with my spring-location-oriented thoughts. So I decided to set a sunshine at one group of courts very close to my house, those at Thomas Williams Park.
This park is another example of a recycled location – something we have a lot of in my area. Formerly the site of a school, it became a park decades ago when the school was demolished. Now it has a play area, basketball courts, soccer/lacrosse/baseball field, and four tennis courts.
In good weather these courts are busy. Today, in dropping temperatures and snow flurries, they were deserted. I set the sunshine on a stone wall at the street side of the courts – this area was the former entrance to the school and the courts sit on the school’s former footprint. I like the look of it, somehow – the structure gives a lot of dignity to the tennis court entrance!
Looking around a bit, I see signs that tell me these courts are just waiting for better weather, and that maybe they are getting some use even in the wintertime – a left-behind container for tennis balls; the court broom hanging on the fence; the net up and ready to go. I also took a look at the water fountain, dating from school days but with a shiny new handle that tells me it gets a lot of use in hot weather. The courts are just taking a little rest right now, I think, getting ready for another season of activity.
One detail – I noticed the metal access cover for the water fountain plumbing works in the ground. I thought its design quite elegant and I was interested in the company that manufactured it. I found that this local ironworks company was in business from the 1830’s to 1969 and made all kinds of items – plumbing, architectural, and agricultural. You can find out more here or take a look at their catalog from 1907. It’s fascinating – a bit of history underfoot here at the park – the company’s work still in use even if the company itself has gone. Fits in with the story of the park, I think.
For more Sunshine Project information, try here, or search under “Sunshine Project”.