The ribbon is cut for the renovated courts at Flash Road Playground in Nahant Friday. (Spencer Hasak)
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NAHANT — The town held a ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday for the new basketball and tennis courts behind the Flash Road playground. The 30-year-old basketball court, and two tennis courts were renovated with the Community Preservation Act (CPA) funding. Both facilities are free and open to the public.
“This was a Community Preservation Act funded project of nearly $300,000 to rebuild a 30-year-old basketball court and tennis courts,” said Town Manager Antonio Barletta.
He said that the whole process with the application took about two or three years, and that the town started to work on it in 2018-2019. The construction itself took about a year, Barletta said. Zach Taylor, superintendent of public works, said that the contractor for the project was Green Acres.
“The project used the money that the town set aside, and it was matched by state funding,” said Nancy Cantelmo from the Community Preservation Committee.
Chair of the committee, Lynne Spencer, added that the money that the town set aside for the project was the real estate tax surcharge. She said that the town needed this project, because the old facilities were decrepit and broken and not usable anymore.
Spencer added that in recent years Nahant spent about $500,000 for the recreation facilities open to the entire community, and those projects included improvements at the Johnson Elementary School and some of the playgrounds in the town.
The renovated sports facilities use the same footprint that the old courts did, said Barletta. The projects are intended to be used by people of all ages. The residents and the kids said they were excited about the renovated facilities.
While the adults were thrilled to give “kids an opportunity to get out of their houses and away from their iPads and television,” as Nahant resident, Kellie Frary, put it, the kids were excited that they now have another place to play sports at .
Bingham Palmer, 8, said that he was excited because he liked to play basketball with his friends over the summer, and his brother Wilder Palmer, 4, said that he loved playing with his brother too.
“I am really excited because I am excited to play with my mom, and really happy that we have a new tennis court, and I just think it’s going to be fun,” said Charlotte Kuschnir, 10.
Herbie Duane, 8, said that he liked the courts, because “they look good, and they are good basketball fields.” And Mel Pillias, 7, said that she was excited because she liked playing tennis with her mom for a while. Amelia Lauck, 6, said that she liked that there were both a basketball court and the tennis courts, because her brother liked to play basketball, and she liked to play tennis.
“I am excited because I love playing tennis, and I played for a while, because it makes me feel powerful, when I hit the ball, and I like that more people will be able to play,” said Lilly Carr, 12.
Oksana Kotkina can be reached at email@example.com.