As the fastest-growing sport in America, pickleball is making waves across the country, including in the great state of Iowa. Check out the Smashpark in West Des Moines, Smithfield Tennis and Pickleball Center in Cedar Rapids, or the Greenstate Family Fieldhouse in Coralville for all your pickleball needs.
Pickleball in Iowa
Pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in the United States, and it’s quickly expanding across the country—including Iowa. The Gazette, an Iowa-based paper, published an article detailing the quirky origin story of pickleball due to the increased demand for the sport statewide.
Meanwhile, many new playing spaces are being built across Iowa to facilitate the rapid growth of pickleball. Corridor Business, a publication tailored to the Iowa City-Cedar Rapids corridor, published an article exploring how a former tennis court center is being repurposed under new ownership to include pickleball as well.
Greenstate Family Fieldhouse
The Greenstate Family Fieldhouse is a large for-profit pickleball facility located in Coralville. The Fieldhouse boasts fifteen indoor pickleball courts, making it one of the largest facilities in the state. Pickleball is available daily from 8am until noon, with balls, nets, and beginner paddles available for rent. It costs $5 a day to play at the Fieldhouse courts. Punchcards available for regular players lower the cost even further.
Cedar Falls Rec Center
The Cedar Falls Rec Center is another pay-to-play facility in the Iowa area. Members of the rec center get access to the pickleball courts for free, with non-members being able to access the drop-in sessions for a fee of between $16 and $24 a session. Pickleball open play sessions run from 8:30am to 10:30am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, as well as 5:30am-7:30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays for those looking for an early morning game of pickleball before work.
Smithfield Tennis and Pickleball Center
Smithfield Tennis and Pickleball Center is a fantastic pickleball facility located in Cedar Rapids. There are two options for those looking to play here. You can either sign up for an unlimited pickleball membership ($55 a month). Or, you can join as a free member, which allows you to book onto the dedicated pickleball courts for a small cost ($7.50 per two-hour slot). The Smithfield Tennis and Pickleball Center has a Playmate Pickleball Ball Machine available for rent to members, allowing you to practice even when you don’t have a match scheduled.
As well as the three courts above, there are several other excellent pickleball court options for players in Iowa.
- The Community Center Gymnasium (Ames)
- Iowa West Pickleball (5 Arena Way Council Bluffs)
- Clear Lake Athletic and Wellness Center (Clear Lake)
- City Park and Tennis Courts (Dubuque St and Park Road, Iowa City)
Pickleball Clubs & Organizations
Council Bluffs Area Pickleball
The Council Bluffs Area Pickleball Club is based in the Council Bluffs Area. They offer their members tournaments, clinics, and other events, as well as reduced pickleball court fees. They often play at the Iowa West Field House in Council Bluffs.
Quad Cities Pickleball Club
Quad Cities Pickleball Club is an organization that works across Iowa and Illinois. According to their website, they ‘provide a forum to organize multiple places to play the game in the area, free lessons, and group activities. We serve as an outreach group to area cities, schools, and park districts to help spread the fun and healthful benefits of the activity.’
iPN Duel in Des Moines
The Duel in Des Moines is a pickleball tournament that takes place at the MidAmerican Energy RecPlex in West Des Moines, IA. It features doubles play (men’s, women’s, and mixed doubles) split by skill level, with the tournament taking the format of a round-robin followed by a seeded elimination bracket.
The Iowa Games is held twice a year in Iowa. There is a summer event and a winter event, with the whole setup mimicking the Olympics.
Pickleball at the Iowa Games takes place during the Summer Games.
If you’re a beginner looking to get started in Iowa, one of the best organizations to get in touch with is the Council Bluffs Area Pickleball Club. They run a beginner play scheme, which takes place at 5:30 pm on the first and third Tuesday of every month, and every Friday at 7 pm, at the Iowa West Fieldhouse. Here you can learn the basics of the game alongside other new pickleball players. The club provides equipment, so you don’t even need your own paddle.
If you’re in a different part of the state, the Smashpark at West Des Moines offers dedicated pickleball professionals for private lessons.
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