When Jackie and Fred Jones moved from Newport RI to Venice, FL, they convinced the developer at Waterford to pay half the cost of a croquet lawn. Jackie and Fred started playing and teaching at Waterford and from that humble beginning, in the early 1990s, the Sarasota County Croquet Club was born. In the early 2000s, Jackie convinced local government officials to enter a joint venture with the newly formed club to use some “dead space” in Wellfield Park to build croquet courts on in Wellfield Park but have the county maintain it.
Now, almost 20 years later, the Sarasota County Croquet Club is completing its second major expansion. Soon, we will have 7 full-sized courts. We are the largest public croquet club in the country and, one of the largest croquet clubs in the United States. We are the site of numerous national competitions and this year, our first international competition. We remain true to Jackie’s original social values: For her, the social aspect of croquet is the glue that binds the club together. For many of our members, the club is the center of their social lives. For others, it is the venue at which they have achieved national recognition for their croquet skills. We also actively support local youth programs and teach croquet to the next generation of players. We are not a country club with 1 or 2 courts. We are a club dedicated to croquet and to promoting an active, healthy lifestyle for members of the community which we serve.
Even though the members support the maintenance of the facility, we remain open to the public one or two days per week and give free instruction to guests and all our members. Our membership, more than 260, is drawn from the local area as well as all over the US and world.
As a public club, we have a strong culture of volunteerism. To keep dues low, we ask everyone to volunteer in a way that they can.
SEE YOU ON THE CROQUET COURTS SOON