The Sport Court Grand Opening ceremony officially ended with cutting a ribbon. Pictured, left to right, are Massachusetts Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs Executive Director Jenn Aldworth, Ludlow Community Center President Josue Irizarry, Sen. Jacob Oliveira, Rep. Aaron Saunders.
Reminder Publishing photo by Laura Mason

LUDLOW — The Ludlow Community Center/Randall Boys and Girls Club officially unveiled new outdoor courts at the 91 Claudias Way building during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 5.

Located behind the main building, the two multi-function courts allow community members to play more sports outside during the summer months, President Josue Irizarry told Reminder Publishing. At Court A, pickleball and basketball is available while Court B offers shuffleboard and four square. Both courts are protected by a surrounding fence and are positioned beside the rear parking lot.

The sport court project began in 2022 after the Ludlow Community Center was awarded more than $263,000 in American Rescue Plan Act funding, Irizarry said.

Following the ribbon ceremony, officials performed the first shots at the new courts with pickleball. Pictured, left to right, are Oliveira, Aldworth, Irizarry and Saunders.
Reminder Publishing photo by Laura Mason

He explained that the center decided to build these courts in order to further encourage children to be active and spend time outside. Both courts are available to Ludlow residents and non-residents with availability during specific times in the center’s operating hours.

In addition to the sport courts, the club’s awarded ARPA funds also went towards multiple other projects at the center, including new drinking fountains, the preschool floors and the center’s entrance, Irizarry said during the ceremony.

He thanked the Club staff and Board of Directors, the Massachusetts Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs, state Sen. Jake Oliveira (D-Ludlow), state Rep. Aaron Saunders (D-Belchertown) and Ludlow town officials for their support of the Sport Court project, stating that the ARPA funding and courts’ construction “would not have been possible” without their assistance.

“This was a team effort,” he emphasized.

Oliveira also later thanked the project’s contractors for their contribution, stating that the court’s positioning on a slope between the side of the center and a parking lot made the construction more challenging.

Similarly, Saunders stated that the project’s funding was “the best of what the government could do in an incredibly difficult time” and highlighted the growth of the Ludlow community.

Massachusetts Alliance of Boys and Girls Clubs Executive Director Jenn Aldworth, who served as president of the Ludlow Community Center from 2012 to 2018, expressed pride to be a member of the Ludlow club, a Ludlow resident and a former club staff member. In her remarks, Aldworth thanked Saunders and Oliveira for their support of local Boys and Girls Clubs, stating that they were “truly blessed to have you in our backyard.”

Irizarry ended the ceremony by announcing that the Club would soon be starting a new project, which included renovating its baseball and softball field as well as constructing an outdoor bathroom and concession stand. He stated that the Club hoped to complete the project by the end of 2024 or early 2025.

Following the ribbon ceremony, community members were invited to play on the new courts.
For more information about the court schedules or other programs offered at the Ludlow Community Center, visit ludlowbgc.org.