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Iowan Recreates Wimbledon's Center Court in Converted Cattle Feedlot

All Iowa Lawn Tennis Club

Wimbledon is known for its iconic bentgrass courts, but London isn’t the only place where you can play on that type of lawn. Mark Kuhn lives on a farm near Charles City and converted a cattle feed lot into a replica of the famous center court at Wimbledon in 2002, 50 years after he first heard of the court on a BBC radio broadcast.

He spoke with Charity Nebbe Friday on the Iowa Public Radio’s Talk of Iowa. He says converting the cattle feed lot to a tennis green was quite the task.

“We brought in 17 loads of very sandy soil because water pours through this, and it grows better in sandy soil. Then we installed five drainage tile lines, a 16 head sprinkler system and then leveled it all off and seeded it,” he says. “I mow it every morning to a height of 3/8 of an inch. It’s probably just a little taller than a golf green.”

The court has been dubbed the All Iowa Lawn Tennis Club. It’s free to play on, and Kuhn takes reservations on his website. 

Lindsey Moon is IPR's Digital Producer
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa