For as long as pickle ball has been around in Tillamook, it’s been played inside, mostly at the tennis courts at the Fairgrounds or at the YMCA. Now with the retrofitting and resurfacing of the tennis courts at 9th Street Park, those who want to play pickleball out side on a nice sunny day can do so, hopefully by next Monday if everything goes well and the weather cooperates.
The work on the courts will cost the tax payers nothing. Thanks to the help of the Tillamook Pickleball Association and a grant from the Tillamook Elks Club along with many hours of volunteer work the cost is next to nothing to get the courts refurbished and ready.
The pickleball group is using the Elks grant for materials to resurface and stipe the courts that when finished will be used for tennis like always, but will also host four pickleball courts within the tennis courts.
Tom Widden with the North West Pickleball Veterans, Lake Oswego, travels around to help refurbish courts and grow the sport.
Tom says it’s the perfect sport for seniors, in fact he says, 95 percent of the pickleball played is done by seniors.
“A lot of us used to be tennis players,” Widden said. “Pickleball is always played as doubles, never singles, so it involves more people.”
Widden said, he’s witnessed this sport take off over the past five years. “I’ve seen over 100 pickleball courts in the last five years being built or retrofitted,” he said. “There were only three in Portland, now there are 27 places to play. On the coast there were zero places to play five years ago now there are 22 plus these in Tillamook.”
Hidden said he hopes to be serving up the Pickleball by next week and the group hopes to dedicate the courts after the June Dairy Parade.
The Tillamook Mid County Parks and Recreation District. and the City of Tillamook also worked with the organizations on this project.