Nicollet Tennis Center

Unlike such popular pursuits as nose picking and lovemaking, tennis is best done outdoors. But in Minnesota, as you've undoubtedly noticed, tennis under God's big top is only practicable for about five months out of the year. But you needn't let your ground strokes, lobs, or awesome net game go to seed just because there's snow on the ground and you can't afford the dues at a fancy tennis club or exercise facility. At this inner-city dome, nonmembers can rent courts by the hour (not cheap at $17.60 per hour but not terrible, and of course you're likely to be sharing the costs), and the seasonal registration fee, which allows you to reserve courts and participate in leagues, is a manageable $60 for individuals. There's also a small but smartly stocked pro shop and a number of patient and effective pros available for individual and group lessons (including some for kids.) If you're looking to play competitively and maybe meet some new people, you can join one of the center's leagues--and don't worry, the NTC folks will help you determine which level to join so you won't be humiliated or bored squaring off against players of significantly lesser or greater ability. Plus, the center's marshmallow ceilings seem to do acoustical wonders to those grunts you might like to emit while delivering an untouchable first service to your hapless opponent.


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