There may not be any surf nearby, but there’s certainly plenty of sand at King Memorial Park in Franklin where the town has paired with a local Eagle Scout to construct a regulation-sized beach volleyball court.
The idea had been talked about for awhile in the Recreation Department office, according to director Ryan Jette, who said Program Director Megan Woodacre, a former collegiate volleyball player and coach, had been looking into what it would take to construct a regulation-size court.
That’s when local teenager Jack Jenkins approached the town with his idea to construct a beach volleyball court as part of his Eagle Scout project.
“We’ve had pick-up volleyball at Beaver Pond for years, and put up nets and made grass courts, but we’ve never had anything like this,” Jette said. “We had the idea, and then Jack came to us and we were able to put it all together.”
Jenkins worked closely with the recreation department and Department of Public Works, putting in more than 100 hours of work geyting the court completed over the past several weeks. The total cost for materials was about $4,000, according to Jette.
Jette said a lot of research went into the project so it would be built correctly.
They had to excavate and grade the area, then put down a level base coat, a layer of pebbles for drainage, and then 150 tons of washed beach sand poured to a depth of 12 inches so it would be deep enough to prevent players’ feet from scraping the gravel layer.
A “pro-grade” adjustable net was also installed, and the boundary lines and other finishing touches were being completed Thursday morning, when the court was officially opened.
Jette said his department is hoping to run tournaments at the court next spring, but in the meantime, volleyballs will be left at the site for people to play pick-up games year round.
Ellen Ishkanian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.