The city in the summer is set to update the park's tennis courts, add pickleball courts and renovate other amenities after getting input from tennis locals.
TOLEDO, Ohio — The city of Toledo has put millions of dollars toward improving its parks, with one of them being west Toledo's Jermain Park preparing to undergo construction in the coming weeks.
City park director Joe Fausnaugh said they are planning to bring some life back to the area which once served as a tennis hotspot for locals.
“The site has a lot of deferred maintenance. We haven't been able to put the amount of care that we want to,” Fausnaugh said. “But that's changing this summer.”
The renovation has already put together $1.5 million worth of changes that Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz donated to the parks from the city's recovery fund.
This includes adding six high-quality tennis courts, adding pickleball courts, and updating the site's buildings and other amenities.
Fausnaugh said the revitalization could not have happened without community support, especially from tennis enthusiasts.
“We put a lot of effort into planning the reconstruction of those courts, talking to the people who play tennis, the local high school tennis teams,” Fausnaugh said.
Matthew Damschroder, the city of Toledo's tennis program coordinator at Jermain and Ottawa Park, also serves as an instructor at Launchpad Tennis.
Damschroder also has a history with Jermain Park, as he used to work there lending people equipment back in the day. It used to be booming with players who filled the parking lots and roads surrounding, he said.
“(Jermain Park) was a place where kids who could not afford to play in the clubs could come to play tennis. We learned the game through quality time, not quantity time,” Damschroder said.
Damschroder is excited to see the future of the park as it played a big part in his childhood. He hopes it will be just as valuable to the next generation.
“It's a safe place, it's a wonderful, wonderful gathering place for a picnic, tennis, shuffleboard, and stuff you just don't get everywhere. So we're just excited to hear the noise again,” Damschroder said.
The park will be a memorial for Damschroder's close friend and local tennis player Zach Barden who helped him start Launchpad, and memorialize others through benches, plaques or gazebos.
Fausnaugh said if everything goes accordingly, the courts will be ready by next fall.
The park was once home to the White City Amusement Park over 100 years ago. But in 1915, it became Jermain Park, a recreational home for tennis, shuffleboard, horseshoes and the Toledo's only mountain bike trail.