By Sara Petyk
Pittsburgh is a sporting town and its parks reflect that. Here is a list of the best of public courts and fields in and around the city for a wide variety of sports. Truly there’s something for everyone’s taste.
Frick Park Red Clay Tennis Courts
800 S. Braddock Ave
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15221
Hours: 9 a.m. to dusk, weather permitting
Citiparks Tennis Program
Frick is Pittsburgh’s largest regional park and offers much for outdoor and sports enthusiasts. Frick Park offers the unique option of playing on clay courts at their tennis center along S. Braddock Avenue. These courts were first constructed in 1930 and were refurbished by a group of volunteers in 2007. The Frick Park Clay Court Tennis Club continues to update the courts and organize tournaments every year.
Those interested in learning to play tennis or improving their game can learn more about lessons for all age groups, as well as local competitions, through Citiparks’ webpage. Courts are located in Frick, Highland, McKinley, Mellon, Schenley and West parks.
Frick Park Lawn Bowling Courts
7300 Reynolds Street
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15221
(412) 782 – 0848
Also located in Frick Park is the Frick Park Bowling Green, opened in 1938 and still maintained by a volunteer group of lawn bowlers. Lawn bowling is an ancient game and Frick’s green contains two 120-foot squares of carefully maintained grass. If you are interested in learning more about lawn bowling and how to play, contact the Frick Park Lawn Bowling Club.
If you want to play tennis all year round, the indoor courts at Mellon Park are just for you. These courts are located in an air-conditioned “bubble” and feature a state-of-the-art playing surface, showers and many other amenities. Mellon Park, located in Shadyside along Fifth Avenue, also offers outdoor basketball courts and baseball fields.
North Park Swimming Pool Lot
S. Ridge Drive and Hemlock Drive
Allison Park, Pa. 15101
Hours: 11:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. First Saturday in June through Labor Day
Price: Adult: $5
Senior Citizens and Youths: $3
(824) 935 – 1951
Business Directory Listing
North Park, opened in 1931, is located about 15 miles outside of town in Hampton, McCandless, and Pine Townships. The park holds the county’s first official freeride trail in the newly designated North Park Freeride Area thanks to Allegheny County Parks and Pittsburgh Trails Advocacy Group. The area inlcudes the Dr. J Trail and Skills Park for mountain and BMX bikers. The skills park is for all levels with beginner as well as advanced obstacles and jump lines. The Dr. J Trail is a flowing single-track trail with jumps, drops, elevated bridges, and other technical features. The freeride area can be found adjacent to Pie Traynor Field and swimming pool.
Schenley Park is located in the heart of Oakland and its 456 acres includes trails, playgrounds, a pool, picnic shelters, and some of the best fields and sporting areas in the city. The Schenley Oval Sportsplex located on Overlook Drive includes a running track with rubberized surface, soccer field, and high jump area. Adjacent to this area is the 13-court Schenley Tennis Center with lighted courts for year-round and late-night play. Cross-country competitions are often held on the park trails.
Schenley Park also contains a unique 18-hole disc golf course on the greens overlooking a stunning view of Oakland and Downtown. The course was installed in 1988 and you can learn more about how to play at Pittsburgh Flying Disc Society – www.pfds.org. Of course, if you’re a fan of the classic golf game you can play a round at Schenley Park’s Bob O’Connor Golf Course which opened in the park in 1902.
Bethel Park, Pa. 15102
South Park is located in Bethel Park Municipality and South Park Township. The park includes a golf course, dek hockey and ice skating rinks, ballfields, a pool and tennis courts. The park has long been an attraction for the adventurous, however, offering both a BMX race track and a skate park. South Park BMX track was opened in 1978 and continues to host public times as well as professional contests, including national races. The original track layout has been maintained, following the natural flow and topography of the landscape. The South Park Action Park is a concrete skate park located next to the BMX track and is open to the public.
Sara Petyk started her company Your Active City to show off the great city of Pittsburgh. Her biking and walking tours can found at www.youractivecity.com.