Hot Springs Village Parks and Recreation Director Terry Wiley received a positive response when he addressed the Tennis Center players on Wednesday, April 12. Wiley clarified where they stood with money, some challenges, and how to make the Tennis Center a better place.

Capital Project – Hard Court Post Tension Concrete Repair

This project has been discussed for the past three or four years. The lowest bids are around $300,000. “We can’t pay $300,000 to resurface three practice courts. “The Parks and Recreation Department operates under a severe subsidy. The Tennis Center alone loses around $100,000 per year,” stated the Director.

There are around 75 annual tennis memberships, 55 people are part of the Recreation Bundle, and the rest of the tennis players pay a daily fee. There are 220 to 260 plays a week. “We are not getting a lot of revenue coming into the Tennis Center,” said Wiley.

Parks and Recreation went from a 2.5 M deficit to a $1.7 M deficit over the past three years. That is still a deficit that has to be subsidized. We get zero tax dollars; the POA membership pays for the deficit. As residents, we pay millions of tax dollars to Garland and Saline County, but because this is a gated community, we receive none of these tax dollars back.

“We are trying to think of solutions for the hard courts. We are looking for contractors that can cut out the bad areas and re-asphalt those sections, repaint the courts, purchase new nets and benches, and try to make the Tennis Center look as good as we possibly can, knowing we are not going to be able to spend $300,000 to do the post-tension concrete,” explained the Director.

“For us to have the tennis facilities we want, we will need help,” said Wiley.

Village Volunteers stepping up

“Over the past eight months, we have been able to raise money and recruit volunteers to redo our mini golf course totally. In two months, you will not recognize the mini golf amenity. We have new astroturf coming. Private vendors and volunteers have volunteered to redo the concrete work and painting (including a donation of the paint). The Board of Realtors has donated $7,500 for new mini-golf features,” stated Wiley.

The Village Concert Association has sponsored charity concerts and raised funds to pay for new lighting and acoustic drapes at the Woodlands Auditorium. All of this was financed with donations from Members helping and donating.

At the Coronado Center, we have an Entertainment Fundraiser in which local talent donates their time and talents. The money raised has paid for new lighting and a new sound system at the Coronado Center. Click here to read the article about the Entertainment Fundraiser.

The Village Pines Garden Club is donating time and funds to redo the landscaping in front of the Coronado Center.

“We are doing a whole lot of good things in many places,” enthused Wiley.

These are the kind of things we are going to have to do to improve the Tennis Center. Wiley said, “I am not saying we are not going to spend any money at the tennis center. That is not what I am getting at.”

Hot Springs Village wouldn’t be what it is today without Volunteerism

Hot Springs Village is a 1000 Points of Light Community with a LONG history of community spirit and volunteerism

Director Wiley said, “Back in the day, people in the community volunteered. Hot Springs Village won an award from President Bush.”

Click here to read “Hot Springs Village – A Community of Volunteerism.”

Amenity Fees Don’t Fully Cover the cost of most amenities

Wiley said that the amenities fees have never fully funded most of the amenities, leading to the need for people to step up and help. Wiley said, “We can do many things around here [Tennis Center]. We could easily hold a weekend tournament/cookout, where we clean up and paint the bleachers.” This exemplifies what Wiley wants the Tennis Center members to do.

Last year, the only Parks and Recreation cost centers that didn’t lose money were the Outdoor Pool, Dog Park, and Library.

Tennis Association

In the past, the Hot Springs Village Tennis Association raised funds to help with various projects. There was a request for a spreadsheet from the Tennis Association as some members felt they did not know where their $12 dues were being spent. “It is important to us to see where the money is going,” stated one tennis player. The Tennis Association Secretary said she would provide this information by April 30. It was also decided to post this information at the Tennis Center.

Some people wanted to hold get-togethers and events. A suggestion was also made to have a welcoming committee.

Chair of the Parks and Recreation Committee, Debra Fuller, said, “The more we talk together, the more we participate together from a Tennis Association perspective, and the more we put our heads together and solve some of these challenges, I think that we can get a lot done. There is only so much that Parks and Rec can do. There is so much we can do here to make a difference. I don’t think we have tapped into that yet, at least for the four years I have been in the Village.”

Fuller also asked for people to join the Parks and Recreation Committee, as there are five openings coming up soon.

“If you are interested in serving on a Hot Springs Village Property Owners’ Association Committee, please complete a Committee Application and return to Katrina Heap at 895 DeSoto Boulevard, Hot Springs Village, AR 71909 or email it to [email protected].” Go here to download a committee application.

Tennis Pro Shop Plans

On another note, Tennis Pro Bob Wagstaff is working on revitalizing the Pro Shop. Wagstaff said, “My philosophy is to have the things you need to play tennis – to be a service-oriented pro shop (rackets, shoes, grips, etc.). Over COVID, I haven’t had shoes or rackets. The supply chain problems made it difficult to get a lot of stuff. I made a commitment to Terry [Wiley] to get the pro shop going again.” The pro shop will not be like one at a fancy club.

Wagstaff stayed after the meeting to take the names of volunteers.

To view the photos below, click on one and then use the arrows to move through the slide show.

By Cheryl Dowden; Photography by Joe Dowden