–From Marilyn Erickson; photo from the Pickleball page on Facebook
Our Sooke Tennis & Pickleball members (137 of us now on our Facebook page), have really enjoyed our newly refurbished Throup Road Outdoor Courts again this summer, where there has been a huge spike in interest in Pickleball by all ages, but particularly from seniors and retirees, as predicted when we restored the overgrown courts last year.
We’ve offered free lessons and workshops for the second summer and we’re proud to say there is never a fee for playing on our community courts across from Journey Middle School! We are so grateful for the use of these public courts and the ongoing support we have had from the Sooke Community Association, from Sooke Council who originally funded our clean-up, from Courtside Sports, and from Sooke Rotary and others locally who see the fitness, safety and social benefits from being able to play racquet sports in our backyard again, without having to drive to Langford or Victoria as many have been doing for years.
Our very first Tournament and Social for members is scheduled for Saturday, September 14th, 11 am to 4 pm, weather permitting. If rained out it will take place the following Saturday.
Thank you to our PB members who have turned out faithfully each week for our Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday drop-in matches and lessons. (PB schedule on our Facebook page) and to our two volunteer coaches, Pierre Murray and Gail Reichert who have patiently taught us the basics and rules of the most trending sport in N America.
We know that we can’t delay the resurfacing of our thirty-year-old courts much longer, now that they are seeing so much use again. For safety purposes, a colourful new coating material must be applied to save the old asphalt, and three new Pickleball Courts added to the front court as our membership grows. We are actively fund-raising and writing grants but also seek local sponsorship and further financial support to repave and make safer our two community courts. There is not a municipality on the island now without a Pickleball court or converted tennis court. Our group also sells mid-range paddles and Pickleball Tee Shirts to help fund our group activities, and we hope to form more community partnerships to help support our efforts to restore these valuable courts.
Please join us Saturday to see what low impact Pickleball is all about; a mixed social game that is addictive once you start, and resembles ping pong on a badminton size court using a larger whiffle ball and paddle!
Water and refreshments will be served. We hope to see the community come out to watch!