The $17,500 grant was provided through the foundation’s board-directed Community Health Grant Program, which launched in 2021 to assist with funding health-related projects in Christian County.
“It’s important to the health of our community to have clean and healthy parks and public spaces to give us incentive to be outside,” said Raedena Ryan, executive director of the Taylorville Memorial Foundation. “Investing in these types of community-led projects creates more opportunities for people to play, exercise and connect, and contributes to the long-term health of our region.”
The Manners Park courts are the only public courts in Taylorville.
Prior to the restoration, the two courts were riddled with cracks and the paint had become faded. The wear and tear on the courts rendered the spaces difficult to use – and potentially dangerous, said Bailey Hancock, recreation director, Taylorville Park District.
The grant funded the installation of 500 feet of crack treatment, installation of four sleeves for two pickleball courts, pressure washing and resurfacing of both courts and court striping per guidelines established by the national associations that regulate tennis and pickleball. The courts were also outfitted with new nets.
Pickleball is a paddle sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong using a paddle and plastic ball with holes. The sport has been around since the mid-1960’s, but recently has seen a surge in popularity.
“Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing sports in the country and for good reason – it’s a social game that’s appropriate for players of all ages and skill levels,” said Hancock. “We’re encouraging all community members to come to the park to enjoy and take advantage of our beautiful updated courts.”
The Taylorville Memorial Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organized in 1995. The foundation accepts financial donations to help further the mission of Taylorville Memorial Hospital. For more information about the foundation or its Community Health Grant Program, visit memorial.health/tmf or call 217-707-5271.