Illuminating: Bike Polo Court

The cement is curing on the first court in the US built from scratch specifically for bike polo.

After years of being run out of nearly every court with lights, the San Francisco Bike Polo (SFBP) club will finally have a place to play without the threat of being ticketed. SFBP met with both the mayors office and the Park Director after being kicked out of Dolores Park in 2011. “This allowed for some frank discussions about the need and what to do with us” explained Bikeman Ben, one the SFBP organizers.

“Once we heard about the park renovation, we as a group, attended all of the planning meetings and made sure that the parks department knew that there was a demand” Ben continued. “SFBP is the reason the court is being built.”

When asked why a vacant basketball court wasn’t sufficient, Ben detailed three main factors:

  1. Safety – Posts and poles are a danger to the riders.
  2. Flow – Keeping the ball in play – Walls (at least 2’ high) surrounding the court.
  3. Size – Bigger than tennis or basketball. Smaller than hockey.

“We are happy to be able to play anywhere, but being able to design the court to our specifications has made San Francisco the envy of the international polo community” Ben added.

SFBP members include national and world champions, among others considered top players in the sport. Ben continues “more players are moving to San Francisco just because of the talent and the new court. It is a quality fraternal sport that is welcoming to all who love the sport.”

Until the new court opens, you’ll find bike polo being played nearly every night of the week at the Corondo Playground on 21st. Wednesday evenings at 7:00 PM is newcomer night.


10 Responses to “Illuminating: Bike Polo Court”

  1. Grizzled Mission says:

    April 1 is still three weeks away.

    • scum says:

      Best post of the year, so far.

      • Grizzled Mission says:

        If it’s real, and me and my ten friends can really go to the city and get it to drop hundreds of thousands of dollars on the game we like to play, I have completely misunderstood my civics lessons. Only the Koch brothers could exert enough political pressure to obtain public spending that benefits only them, right?

  2. Missionish says:

    A sign that the end is near.

  3. Bill W says:

    This is immensely depressing

  4. @Grizzled Mission Yes, this IS an inspiring story: that consistent involvement at 7-10 open public meetings (10 polo players at least for every meeting of 80 to 100 neighbors) and getting a polo player onto the Dolores Park renovation steering committee is almost certain to result in a dedicated court for this fringe sport. We pitched it at ALL the public planning meetings as an “multi purpose” court: suitable for tai chi in the early morning, teaching kids to ride bikes after school etc…The architects hired to run the public input planning phase of the project were very supportive by keeping our request for a mulit use court from being at odds with tennis players; they shoe-horned in an additional court; same number of tennis courts, one basketball court and the new multi-use court that just happens to have rounded corners: yes, San Francisco, our GOLD PLATED CITY-that-knows-how paid for one of the first polo specific courts in north America. Thank you to City of San Francisco and Recreation and Park Department!