Tennis Center to hold grand opening Monday

CONYERS - Serve up! Rockdale County will hold a ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony Monday to open the new Rockdale Tennis Center on Parker Road.

Rockdale County Commission Chairman Richard Oden and county commissioners JaNice Van Ness and Oz Nesbitt will attend the ceremony scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Monday at the center's club house at 1370 Parker Road.

Other speakers will include members from the county's special purpose local option sales tax, Oversight Committee and Recreation Advisory Committee. There will be on court activities led by Yancy Waldow and Billy Helton of Piedmont Area Tennis Association, the Conyers-based affiliate of the United States Tennis Association. Refreshments will follow a brief ceremony.

The tennis center has 12 courts and is designed to have additional courts built over time. The tennis center will ultimately accommodate up to 16 courts.

Currently, tennis activity in Rockdale County is based out of Pine Log Park in an aging tennis center. Newer courts are available at Johnson Park, too.

Tennis euthanists here have said the complex will help the sport grow locally and eventually become a destination stop for the county as it hosts regional and state tennis tournaments.

"We applaud Rockdale County for their commitment in providing a facility of which we can all be proud," said Bob Nunnery of ConyersTennis.com in an announcement of the ribbon cutting. "As we know, tennis is a lifetime sport. Our new facility will bring greater awareness to the game and opportunity to many."

Construction of the tennis center cost was $1.21 million and was funded by SPLOST sales tax revenue, county impact fees designated for parks and a donation of $50,000 from local tennis player and dentist Mark Shurett.

Shurett raised an additional $25,000, which along with his own donation the county matched to build two additional courts.

The Atlanta Lawn Tennis Association, or ALTA, has approved the facility for league play. Several teams have already scheduled their fall play there, Helton said.

Jay Jones can be reached at jay.jones@rockdalecitizen.com.