THE SUMMER HEAT WAVE HAS ARRIVED IN BC – TIME TO CHECK OUT THE OUTDOORS
Hello fellow picklers, and friends of BC pickleball,
As summer is upon us early this year, we have lots of news of new, impending new and existing courts for you to try on the Nice Days in the province. So , let’s get started !
In the beginning there were few players, and few venues indoor . At that time, I was asked “ how many courts would you like us to mark up for pickleball ? “ Not knowing how many would play outdoor , as the numbers grew indoor, I said to parks and Rec “ one court on one tennis court should do the trick ! “ Well , now we know and have seen in videos from our American counterparts that one little court on one big court is not ideal. So, now we have a movement and traction afoot to put more courts on these disused tennis court and make it easier for the picklers to play the game . Four courts on one tennis court with colour markings different for each sport is better and now being done. This allows for 16 playing on four tennis courts and 16 waiting ( 32) instead of 8. As a business person , this is a no – brainer for parks and rec as it makes the facililty usable by both sports when not used by one or the other. These then become dedicated but shared courts for tennis and pickleball – usable by tennis when not used by pickleball and Vice Versa.
There should be signage on the fence indicating rules of engagement and that these courts are dedicated to two sports. Any Elementary school in Canada has multiple sports on one badminton court. why not us ? When wind plays a factor, we can use the Dura outdoor ball, and when wind is negligible, use the jugs balls ( green or white – white gets dirty quickly ) . To mitigate the distance and running you have to do, get a lock box and put the four portable sets, a hopper for the balls, a Chute for more balls, and put them as well as free paddles and balls ( donated by members and BC
www.pickleball.com) in the box with a combination lock to be shared with your members. Further, if parks and Rec will go for it, request a wind block sheet on the two sides that are not affected by stands and people viewing the games being played. A Practice Board like the one at Centennial park in White Rock is a good idea. Successful programs have been put into place with parks and Rec by getting signatures on a petition and submit it with your proposal for whichever courts you wish to access,
Successful outdoor programs have ocurred this year , using this format , in Tsawassen, Creston, Kelowna, Nanaimo, Maple Ridge, Haney , Vancouver, White Rock, South Surrey and North Delta.
We thank all of these parks and Rec departments for their support of Pickleball, the fastest growing sport in Canada , with some 500 locations in Canada and 60 tournaments. This year Kelowna will join Oakridge Rec center ( Calgary ) in offering the second only outdoor national for the Pickleball Canada / IFP / Usapa group. The other national, because no one from the rest of Canada was attending the Abbotsford tournament will be held at the Rim Center in Kitchener / Waterloo . The original National was open only to Canadians and featured a “ Woody “ tournament at the end. It was lots of fun and all players and paddles were welcome to participate.
Flash : next week White Rock will install a program as described above at Centennial Park and in the next month Surrey will do the same at South Surrey, making it the 3rd largest program in North America.
See you on the court this summer !
Founding Director – www.pickleballcanada.org ( ret )
Founding Director – www.bcpickleball.com ( active)
ph – 604-536-9602