Pickleball Association nears goal for dedicated courts at Tennis Center | SteamboatToday.com

Pickleball Association nears goal for dedicated courts at Tennis Center

Players take part in an afternoon pickleball session on Wednesday inside The Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs. Permanent, outdoor pickleball courts could become a reality this spring at the center.
Austin Colbert

— It’s going to happen.

At least that’s what Steamboat Springs Pickleball Association President Gary Boyer said about the group’s push to get dedicated pickleball courts at the Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs.

“Things are progressing very well,” Boyer said. “We are very pleased. The support and the generosity of our members, as well as a few other organizations in the community, has been terrific.”

The Pickleball Association, which has more than 230 members, has long been working toward its goal of getting dedicated courts at the city-owned Tennis Center. Earlier this year all sides came to an agreement with the Pickleball Association asked to raise approximately 25 percent of the total cost of creating the courts, or roughly $55,000.

To date, the pickleball group has raised $43,345, with Boyer confident the remaining $11,655 will be found by the self-imposed Feb. 1 deadline.

“We are very, very close to that goal. I think that we are definitely going to make it,” Boyer said. “This is a new sport in terms of its popularity, so they are bringing a whole new user group into the Tennis Center, which is going to increase the utilization of the Tennis Center and consequently is going to contribute to their financial wellbeing.”

The plan is to replace two outdoor, clay courts with eight pickleball courts, a first for the Tennis Center.

Construction is set to begin this spring, and by mid-June, the courts should be ready for play, weather permitting.

“Adding pickleball to the Tennis Center will help in every aspect of our operations,” said Tennis Center director Jim Swiggart in a news release, “making the facility available to another great user group, adding additional vitality and programming to our center and helping ensure the center’s future financial viability.”

Currently, the Pickleball Association rents out tennis courts and uses tape to mark the boundaries of the smaller pickleball courts. With the dedicated courts, there will be permanent nets and painted markings exclusively for pickleball.

With the dedicated courts, the Pickleball Association will be able to host larger tournaments, which could draw players from across the state.

“We’d like to shoot for at least one tournament, and possibly two, by the fall,” Boyer said. “We play during times when tennis people aren’t playing, so we fill in some very significant time slots for the Tennis Center. We are just increasing their utilization. The Tennis Center management has been unbelievably supportive.”

To donate to the effort, visit sspa.club and click on the donate button. Checks can also be sent to the organization at P.O. Box 881242, Steamboat Springs, CO 80488.

To reach Austin Colbert, call 970-871-4204, email acolbert@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Austin_Colbert

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