If you dream it, they will come.
And when it comes to the Madison Keys 'Court of Dreams' Celebration of Tennis, that goes for the special event that took place on Friday, July 15, and the tennis court on which it was held.
That’s because it’s a grass court, modeled after Wimbledon’s Centre Court and seemingly conjured from the creative mind of Mark Kuhn—in the middle of Charles City, Iowa.
A corn and soybean farmer, Kuhn saw no reason that he couldn’t create a replica of tennis’ most famous patch of sod—his job, after all, was growing things in the ground. With a passion that matched his dedication, he created the All Iowa Tennis Club, and the pristine piece of turf gives off plenty of All England Club vibes. Until you look around, of course, and remember that you’re 4,090 of miles away from SW19. The cornfields (not to be confused with Southfields) are a giveaway.
“We were going to give it a try, not knowing if it would work or not,” says Kuhn, whose fascination with tennis began by listening to Wimbledon on his grandfather’s short-wave radio. “There’s nothing quite like a grass tennis court.”
This below video, which includes the entire Madison Keys 'Court of Dreams' Celebration of Tennis, goes into greater detail about the Kuhn family, which has experienced tremendous highs—Mark would intern as a groundskeeper at Wimbledon—and lows. But he continues to keep the grass court ready for play, free for children who want to experience and learn the classic game.