No fewer than three breweries have recently opened pickleball courts on their premises. It seems to be a marriage made in heaven – work up a thirst on the courts and then sink a few cold ones afterward!
We journey to Sioux Falls, Pittsburgh, and Kentwood, Michigan, to find out more.
Remedy Brewing Company
It’s official – Remedy Brewing Company of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is now in the pickleball business.
Love Of Building Community
Remedy co-owner, Matt Hastad, talked siouxfalls.business through the concept:
“What can we do that combines our love of building community, getting people together over a pint of beer but giving people something to do? We’ve always had games, patio games, bags, cards, things like that, but this just added another layer to that, so it really helps build that community,”
The three courts have only been open for a few days, but Hastad is already looking ahead:
“There’s talks about leagues, there’s talks about membership, there’s talks about open play, there’s all sorts of different things that we want to do down here, including clinics or beginner level classes where people can come around and just learn what pickleball even is,” he said.
“It’s A Fun Crowd”
“It’s addicting, it’s any age, I tell you, it keeps you active, your hand/eye coordination, but it’s just a fun crowd,” said pickleballer David Flynt.
Flynt has been playing pickleball for eight years and is a member of the local pickleball club.
“It’s addicting, it’s any age, I tell you, it keeps you active, your hand/eye coordination, but it’s just a fun crowd,” he said.
He was also excited about the potential growth of facilities for playing pickleball in the area. “Gosh, I don’t know how many members, we’re a gazillion members here in the Sioux Falls Area Pickleball Club, and just trying to get more facilities to play at is awesome and this, what they’ve done here is really, really nice,” Flynt shared.
Just The Beginning
Hastad envisions expanding the number of courts, potentially introducing the game to Remedy at 611, emphasizing that this venture is just the beginning. “The main focus was just to put in a world-class pickleball playing facility, and then add on what we can in order to make it the most enjoyable experience possible,” Hastad emphasized.
The three full-size pickleball courts are available seven days a week, with the option to reserve a court for $30 per hour from Monday through Wednesday or $35 per hour from Thursday through Sunday.
Players must complete a one-time membership fee and sign a digital waiver before playing.
Velum Fermentation is a veritable hub of activity situated on Pittsburgh’s South Side. Upon entering the meticulously refurbished warehouse, you can’t help but notice its carefully nurtured aesthetic appeal. However, now there is an added dimension to its attraction, specifically, on a Wednesday evening, the rear section will be a cauldron of intense pickleball action.
A Community Suggestion
Jenna McLaughlin, Velum’s Chief Operating Officer, and Nate McLaughlin, the President and Head Brewer, shared the ethos of their business during an interview with Pittsburgh City Paper.
Jenna emphasized their receptiveness to diverse ideas, stating, “We had some ideas of what to do with the space, but so many cool people have so many cool ideas. So we just started listening.”
Nate, drawing from his industry experience, explained his strategic approach to space utilization, saying, “I saw that across the industry, a lot of people start too small, and they have to expand quickly, and it’s painful and expensive. So I picked a spot that I could grow into, not grow out of.”
Beyond being a haven for beer enthusiasts, Velum aims to cater to a broader audience, with the owners letting patrons influence the activities within the facility. For instance, the introduction of the pickleball courts arose from a community suggestion, illustrating Velum’s commitment to providing a space where everyone can feel a sense of belonging.
Broad Leaf Brewery And Spirits
We reported back in November of last year that Broad Leaf Brewery And Spirits was opening the first combination indoor pickleball court and restaurant in Kent County, Michigan.
Well, the courts were officially opened on January 20. And to celebrate the opening, Broad Leaf offered a giveaway, and special pickleball-themed drinks and menu items.
“This City Loves Pickleball”
“This city loves pickleball and now we are able to invite them in for an entire experience,” head chef Lee DeHaan told wzzm13.com. “I have loved seeing people playing hard with friends and family, then sticking around to enjoy something off our menu and kicking back with a beer, cocktail, or craft soda afterward.”
CEO and owner Jason Spaulding said the addition of the courts is “evolving (Broad Leaf) into an entertainment complex”.
General Manager Jared Rader added, “We are getting a lot of requests for parties and private groups. It turns out this is the perfect group outing where you can have a bunch of people rotate playing and enjoying what our pub has to offer.
“We have room to grow with more courts within the building and possibly outside so we are excited to see where this kick-off weekend takes us.”
“A Lot Of Fun”
Rader said the space used to be a drive-in cooler, but the team decided they wanted to do something different with the space.
“We want you to be able to have fun, show off with your friends, take a break and go have a little bit of beer, and then come back and resume your game. The concept hadn’t been done before, so we decided to trademark it and give it a go. You know, it’s a pretty easy setup for us and it’s quite a lot of fun,” he said.
“No matter if you’re new to pickleball or have been playing for a while. It’s a great place to kind of gather with friends anyway,” Spaulding added. And now you can play games and hang out – it’s been great.”
To reserve a court, those interested must sign up for a free membership on courtreserve.com. You will be prompted to complete a waiver before reserving a court, which can be done ahead of time.
Court rentals are $30 per hour for two to four players.
“Our Favorite Thing Is Pickleball”
Along with the courts, Rader said they are also partnering with a Rockford company that creates pickleball paddles.
Larry Lynch founded local company Kiwi Labs Pickleball in May last year and they create custom paddles featuring the brewery’s logo
“Our favorite thing in the world is pickleball. It blossomed into a paddle company that has barely been around for not even a year, and it’s, I want to say, exploded,” he said.
Lynch also makes custom pickleball shirts and plans to start a pro shop at the brewery. He said he has been playing pickleball for years and talked about how popular it has become: “As it grows, everyone just wants to share their favorite thing with other people so it’s just because of that even.”
Broad Leaf also offers paddle rentals through KiwiLabs if you don’t have your own gear.
To learn more about Broad Leaf or to reserve your court, click here.
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