Steamboat tennis complex rebrands after busy summer

Susan Mayes and Carol Rau play pickleball at the newly rebranded Steamboat Pickleball and Tennis Center on Tuesday.
Shelby Reardon

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Loretta Conway, Business Development Director at the Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs, was admittedly worried when the center shut down for two and a half months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, on the cusp of fall, the tennis center is concluding one of its most successful summers yet, and is rebranding to bring pickleball to the forefront of the center. 

From now on, the center will be known as the Steamboat Tennis and Pickleball Center. The website and staff emails will be switched over soon, but will allow for a seamless transition for patrons familiar with the current url and emails. 

“We’re trying to make our marketing, our website, everything look more balanced between the two sports,” said Conway. “It won’t be fully balanced until we get that new building because we just don’t have the room to grow the programs with pickleball the way we have with tennis.”

Until the new proposed pickleball building is built, tennis is still the main sport at the complex, especially once weather closes the outdoor courts.

The wind screens on the outdoor courts will be taken down on Oct. 1, to prevent them from getting too wet before going into storage. Conway said the courts will remain open until snow is consistent and forces them to move play indoors. 

Also new, is a court pass program in which players can pay ahead for the month or year, rather than each time they walk through the door. A family court pass would be $1,500, or $138 per month. Not only would it save frequent players money in the long run, but it’ll be easier for the tennis and pickleball center to track its income each month. 

Soon, Steamboat Tennis and Pickleball Center will announce new court rental rates, the first overall increase in years, according to the website. 

When the center reopened, people flocked to the courts. Conway said revenue was up 47% compared to last June and July. Pickleball court rentals were up 37% over last year. There were waitlists for camps and not enough teachers to fill the demand for lessons. 

Steamboat Tennis and Pickleball Center has introduced a new Court Pass, which allows patrons to pay for a month or year in advance rather than each time they walk through the door.

“I’ve never turned away so many people,” said Conway. “I didn’t have the manpower or the space for many other requests, but we did have a great summer.”

The busy summer season is only instilling more confidence in Conway and everyone involved in fundraising for the new pickleball building. 

“There’s no doubt in my mind these two buildings are going to be busy,” she said. 

The Court Sports 4 Life nonprofit, which plans to assume the managing and care taking duties of the new complex, has now finalized its seventh design of the new building, which could very well be the actual design. Board members of the nonprofit are meeting with the Steamboat Springs City Manager soon to finalize the new agreement with the city regarding the process of Court Sports 4 Life taking over the complex.

To reach Shelby Reardon, call 970-871-4253, email or follow her on Twitter @ByShelbyReardon.

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