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Tijuana Jai Alai
In 1947 the Jai Alai court was opened and looking at the Moorish style building now, it is easy to see that by this time in Tijuana's development, there was a clientele to impress and money to carry it out with. Jai alai is a very distinctive sport which requires its own special equipment. The cesta, a Spanish word for basket, is the long, curved basket a player uses to catch and throw the pelota and is hand-woven specifically for each individual player. The wicker basket is made from reeds found exclusively in the Pyrenees Mountain and the frame is made of steam bent Chestnut. The pelota is the hardest ball of any sport. It is roughly 3/4 the size of a baseball and is harder than a rock. The core consists of Brazilian virgin de pola rubber, is layered with nylon and hand-stitched with two goat skin covers. The pelota, on average, has a court life of about 20 minutes before the cover splits due to the high velocities at which it hits the wall during play.
The object of Jai Alai is to hurl a pelota (ball) against the front wall and as close to the side wall of the court with so much speed (as fast as 185 mph) and spin that the opposition cannot catch or return it on the fly or the first bounce.
If you go anywhere near 7th on Revolucion Blvd., this is the one place you can't miss. Jai Lai is no longer played in Tijuana, however the Jai Alai building is a Tijuana landmarks. Today its used for concerts, Luche Libre (Mexican pro wrestling) and other events.
- Location: Between 7th and 8th street on Revolution ave.