It’s unknown whether a growing sport will have a Vernon park to call home.
The Vernon Pickleball Club has asked the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee to use the Paddlewheel Park tennis court. However, a review is needed before a decision is made.
“It’s a very busy park,” said Keith Pinkoski, GVAC parks planner.
“We want to accommodate this sport but we don’t want to displace any of our existing users in that area.”
Juliette Cunningham, GVAC chairperson, also insists that Paddlewheel Park’s ability to facilitate a variety of uses must be considered.
“We don’t want to upset our existing users,” she said.
Pickleball involves a racquet and aspects of the sport are similar to badminton and tennis.
The club, which has 240 members, uses Sawicki Park on Middleton Way but the asphalt surface is in poor condition.
It would like lines painted at the Paddlewheel Park tennis court, which it has used during the summer for tournaments.
“We’re growing every day,” said Cheri Burgess, club spokesperson.
“We’re looking for a safe, decent surface, a place where we can gather.”
Burgess says the club would not schedule play during peak boat times at Paddlewheel and minimize conflict with other activities.
“It’s not just for the club, it’s for families.”
Burgess added that scheduled times for pickleball would generate revenue for the parks and recreation department.
Besides Paddlewheel Park, the club has asked the City of Vernon for permission to use MacDonald Park and it wants Coldstream to provide access to the Middleton Mountain tennis courts.
Indoor winter sessions are held at the Priest Valley Gym and Vernon Christian School.