Future uncertain for Island croquet club

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To the Editor:

The Edgartown Croquet Club has been on the Island in one form or another since 1981. Croquet, in all its forms (backyard, golf, association, American six-wicket and nine-wicket) is a beloved sport that can be played from the age of 5 to 100, and is played equally well by every gender.

Croquet is played out in the fresh air and all year long, weather permitting. Croquet is mentally challenging, physically easy, and a delightfully social sport. 

ECC current membership is 21, many in our seventies. It is an important, singular, and healthful resource for seniors.

ECC is a public court, generously granted via a memorandum of agreement from the town of Edgartown. A public court makes joining a club affordable. ECC dues are $175 per year, which allows access to balls and equipment, and play whenever you can. You can join in on women’s Monday morning game and lunch; Wednesday golf croquet and pub crawl; Saturday lesson and play. ECC provides free lessons for those who are interested on Saturdays and Tuesdays.

ECC has taught children from the Boys and Girls Club, hosted clubs from Sandwich and Marion, held the Massachusetts State Championship, and was voted the best public court in the U.S. by the U.S. Croquet Association.

The court may now be sacrificed to build an access road for the new Boys and Girls Club. 

What is more threatening than the loss of the court is the ensuing loss of the club. At the core of the ECC have been championship players who have trained other top U.S. players for decades. The mentoring of novices to nationally top ranked players is the heart of any croquet club. Without a core of seasoned players, the establishment of a new club would be most difficult.

If the existing lawn is unavailable for more than a year, the Edgartown Croquet Club will have no venue, and will likely die out. Once it is gone, the century-long tradition of tournament-style croquet on Martha’s Vineyard will be lost.

 

Cecily Greenaway, president

Edgartown Croquet Club