Almost there: Crowdfunding campaign launched for new East Side tennis facility

After years of planning, fundraising, and building, an East Side project is getting one more financial push to help bring everything to fruition.

The Bay Community Tennis Association is readying the Janet Jopke Tennis Facility for its grand opening party on Thursday, June 6. Located on the site of the former Thomas Jefferson Elementary School on the East Side of Bay City, the tennis facility will feature eight new tennis courts, an event space, extensive landscaping, and more.

Now the Bay Community Tennis Association has partnered with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation on a crowdfunding campaign that could raise an additional $100,000 to help complete construction of the new public space.

As part of the MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program, the BCTA has through June 3 to raise $50,000 through a crowdfunding campaign. Should they prove successful, the MEDC will contribute an additional $50,000 matching grant as part of the state’s placemaking initiative.

The crowdfunding campaign is hosted on the Michigan-based Patronicity platform.

"The MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program added legitimacy to our project through the professionalism it provided. In addition, it heightened awareness of our efforts by boosting local outreach," says Joe Ricard, president of the Bay Community Tennis Association.

"We wish we had been aware of the PSCP program years ago."

More than a tennis court, the Janet Jopke Tennis Facility will include space for outdoor events, a storage building, ADA-compliant restrooms, two parking lots, and shade trees and landscaping. The eight tennis courts are handicap-accessible.

The facility is free and open to the public, though the eight tennis courts will also serve as home court for the Central High School boys and girls tennis teams.

Click here to view the campaign’s status.

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