City of London dedicates new sand volleyball court

Messenger photos by Theresa Hennis
(From left) Jerry Alcott of London, Judy Alcott of Hilliard, and Jack Alcott of London stand under the archway that bears their mother’s nickname. Meezee’s Court, named for Mary Louise Alcott, is the new sand volleyball court at the London Municipal Pool.

(Posted May 20, 2019)

By Theresa Hennis, Staff Writer

Mary Louise (Meezee) Alcott, a former city auditor for London, loved her family and the city. Generous donations to the city, made in her memory, are a legacy that will serve the community for a long time to come.

On May 18, the Alcott family met with city officials and friends at the London Municipal Pool to dedicate a new sand volleyball court in memory of Mary Louise.

“I had envisioned buying the property behind the municipal pool, tearing down the old church on it, and putting up a volleyball court. I estimated it would cost $100,000,” said Mayor Pat Closser.

Jerry Alcott, Mary Louise’s son and owner of Building Systems Transportation in London, had previously donated funds to make improvements to the pool, a project dear to his mother’s heart. When he heard the mayor’s dream for the volleyball court, he told Closser, “You got it!” He donated $100,000 to the project.

Members of the Alcott family–Natalie Small and her son, Christian–enjoy the first game on the city of London’s new sand volleyball court.

Judy Alcott, Mary Louise’s daughter, explained the origin of the court’s name, Meezee’s Court.

“When Mom was little,” Judy said, “she would say, ‘Meeze hungry, meeze cold.’ And that’s where the nickname came from.”

Jerry Alcott has pledged another $100,000 to build a splash pad at the pool, coming next year.

“I’m hoping that giving kids in the community more fun things to do in the summer will keep them out of trouble and away from drugs,” he said.

The volleyball court, which is regulation size and features beach sand, is open to pool patrons during pool hours. The city also plans to open the court to anyone, free of charge, in the mornings before the pool opens. The start date for the morning hours will be announced soon, Closser said.

Melissa Closser, wife of London Mayor Pat Closser, stands by the sign she designed for the volleyball court.

“We also will be doing weekend tournaments through the summer and hope to do a league starting around mid-August and into September,” he added.

The London Municipal Pool, 203 Park Ave., opens on May 25. Hours are 12-8 p.m.

The following provided services for construction and dedication of the court: London’s street and parks and recreation departments, Finchum Excavating, MCE Electric, True Grade Fence, Penchura, Madison Lawn Care, Creamer Metal Products, CK Signs, 7forty Designs, Traditions Catering, ABC Restrooms and Madison Tent Rental Co.

London Mayor Pat Closser delivers a thank-you speech and the story of how the volleyball court project came to be.
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