Pickleball has steadily gained in popularity since its humble beginning in 1965. The good news is that this trend shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon.
With its easy-to-learn rules and fast-paced gameplay, it’s no wonder the sport has become a favorite among players of all ages and skill levels.
Recently, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser proposed a $750,000 plan to build four new Pickleball sites in the District. The plan involves converting underused or broken-down tennis courts in a move to provide players with more opportunities to play this exciting sport.
Currently, there are only ten full-time Pickleball courts in the city, and most players must share the available tennis courts to play their games. While this has worked to some extent, it has caused court time conflicts between the two sports.
NBC4 spoke to Erika Peace, a local pickleball player, who said, “There’s no place near me, right, like, my choices during the week are Capitol Hill, all the way Northwest, Palisades, other side of Georgetown.” Peace added, “And so, that’s part of my day. I plan on driving 30 minutes to go play pickleball for an hour.”
The proposal initially included converting some basketball courts, but now only tennis courts will be considered. The Bowser administration is looking at 17 locations across the District to locate the new courts, and said that community feedback will be sought before choosing the sites.
The $750,000 price tag for the new courts raises the question of whether the investment is reasonable, especially given the city’s budget shortfall. Others argue that promoting a healthy lifestyle is worth the investment.
Mayor Bowser is clearly excited about the sport. She tweeted, “There are currently 36.5 million pickleball players estimated in the U.S. Tomorrow, there will be one more.”
There are currently 36.5M pickleball players estimated in the US. On Thursday, there will be one more.— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) March 28, 2023
I’m joining some of our senior and seasoned pickleball players to learn the basics — join us!
📍1100 Michigan Ave, NE (Turkey Thickett)
RSVP ➡️https://t.co/h7u8Vs2Bt4 pic.twitter.com/uBVRTG5iYU
Pickleball is an excellent way to get some exercise while having fun with friends and family. It’s also a great way to meet new people and build a sense of community. So whether you’re a seasoned player or a newbie, be sure to check out a court near you.
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