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Tennis players dismayed by repaved courts at Rath Park

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Pavers filled all the cracks at Rath Park’s tennis courts, ground them up and repaved them with asphalt earlier this month to ensure Franklin Square residents’ safety. The work was completed by Westbury-based Stasi Brothers Asphalt Corp, and was included in the Town of Hempstead’s capital improvements budget.

But several residents have since expressed their disappointment with the repaved courts. A woman who requested to only be referred to as Sarah, for example, noted that “there is literally no shade there, so that black top can get insanely hot, almost too hot to play on when the sun’s blasting down on it,” and Michael Ziolo said he has tried playing on the new courts, but his balls and sneakers became black from the tar.

“I think it’s ridiculous, and should have been done properly with the green acrylic top,” he said. “All the other towns have them done properly.”

The green acrylic tops, he explained, are better for people’s joints and provide players with a better bounce for their balls. They are also “much nicer visually,” he said.

“Let’s hope they fix it properly,” Ziolo said. “If not, I will continue to play at Hempstead Lake State Park” where state officials recently renovated the courts “beautifully and properly.”

Sarah, however, said she thought the asphalt would be “perfectly fine for a hard-top court” if there were shade in the area, and thought the Town of Hempstead should offer more tennis programs for children and adults at the courts.

They are now open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for singles and doubles games.