On a beautiful, spring Pied- mont day on April 28, the Recreation Department’s Walking on Wednesdays group gathered for their third week of walks since Covid restrictions were lifted. The day before their walk the CDC had issued new guidelines for small groups to walk outdoors without masks, but the group agreed that they would continue to wear masks.
The previous week the group walked to Dracena Park, a former rock quarry, so they decided to continue their exploration of quarry sites that have become recreation parks. The decision was to visit Davie Tennis Stadium on the Piedmont/Oakland border.
The site was the former Piedmont Paving Company quarry and was given to the City of Oak- land in 1931 by John L Davie, a former mayor and lawyer. The stadium includes five courts and a clubhouse mainly within the Piedmont city limits.
After meeting at the Exedra, the group walked behind the Community Hall up to Guilford Avenue and then down a short path to Hazel Lane. They viewed the historic, huge redwood tree in the road just before Requa Road. This tree marked the entrance to Piedmont’s first school, the Ransom-Bridges School, which opened in 1913 on land that is now the Hazel Lane loop.
The group went down Requa Road, past the home of Piedmont Historical Society president Gail Lombardi, who has provided so much Piedmont history that the walkers have enjoyed. They also noted an impressive gazebo in a backyard perched high above the street on large steel beams. After crossing Wildwood Avenue they went down Prospect Avenue to Oakmont Avenue and then into the tennis stadium. Looking up at the steep rock walls, they saw the slope that was created by the quarry digging decades ago. Players were on the courts, but the historic clubhouse with its collection of vintage racquets and pictures of local tennis greats was closed because of the pandemic. The morning was going by quickly and it was time to head back. The group walked up to Park Lane, over to Lakeshore Avenue and up Harvard Road and back to Prospect. The walkers made their way back to the Exedra by going through Piedmont. They were pleased with its shade provided by the park and pleased to see that water was still flowing in Bushy Dell Creek. The walkers emerged from the park after a leisurely, enjoyable two-mile walk in 90 minutes.