HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – Hattiesburg leaders, along with tennis players and pickleball competitors, cut the ribbon on new courts for tennis and pickleball at Kamper Park on Thursday. The morning also included the rededication of the Bubba Phillips Tennis Complex. 

“Today is a rare occasion that we get to bring the history of Hattiesburg together with the new and ever-changing future of Hattiesburg for an event that leans back to tell the story of those who brought us here – specifically to those of us who didn’t live here at that time,” said Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker.

With 340,000 pounds of concrete and steel making up the new courts, Kamper Park is now home to championship-grade courts and 40 new LED lights that provide high-quality foot candle coverage of the courts. New netting and poles have also been installed, along with ADA-accessible ramps. 

The total cost of the renovated complex was $500,000 and was fully funded by the 1-cent restaurant and hotel/motel tax passed by voters in April of 2019 for parks and recreation projects.

The courts are free to use and are open seven days a week, from sunrise until 10:00 p.m. Court availability is based on a first-come, first-served use.

The naming of the Bubba Phillips Tennis Complex was originally approved when the Hattiesburg City Council voted unanimously to name the site in honor of local sports hero and involved community leader, John Melvin “Bubba” Phillips, on November 2, 1993.