CIRCLEVILLE – There is a new game in town with the Pickaway County Pickleball Association as they now have a pair of courts at Barthelmas Park to play.
Pickleball is a paddleball sport that combines elements of badminton, table tennis and tennis. Two or four players use sturdy paddles made of wood or composite materials to strike a perforated polymer ball, much like a wiffle ball, with 26 to 40 round holes, over a net.
Last month, the group went to Circleville city council to apply for land inside one of the parks and after discussions with the administration, took over one of the two plots. basketball court in Barthelmas Park. The courtyard was repaved and painted thanks to donations to the city.
Julie Strawser, co-chair of the Pickaway County Pickleball Association, said she has partnered with the Pickaway County Community Foundation to create a fund to help finance improvements such as the Bartelmas Park lot renovation.
“We just put the check memo, ‘Pickleball’, and it’s going into an account,” she said. “We received private donations and a donation of $ 1,000 from Circleville Girls’ Softball and we had great support from the Mayor and the Pickaway County Park Services and District Director and the Parks Council.”
Shubert Tennis LLC won the bid on the project. While the courts are many different colors, Strawser said they wanted to go for a two-tone green and blue scheme. As of now, a total of eight players can play at the same time.
“They’ve finished the pitch so we have about a month of play before winter comes this year,” she said. “This look is more standard and we wanted a more natural look. We have the courts facing north-south, which is important for the winds.
Strawser said they plan to develop the sport locally and already have high school students involved. They also play inside the YMCA. Courts no longer have permanent nets, but they plan to create them as interest increases.
“We’re going to come in after the Pumpkin Show and introduce pickleball to eighth grade for four days and the advanced physical education class for four days,” she said. “We’re trying to generate interest and we’re going to give the girls a time where they can come and play. We are trying to be good emissaries for the sport and to bring it to Pickaway County. “
In Williamsport, Kay Swaney said they were putting duct tape to have temporary courts inside the Community Square Park gymnasium.
“I was hoping we could paint a few lines in the parking lot and leave it there, but that wouldn’t work because it would tear the bullets apart,” Swaney said. “So we put the masking tape in the gym to have an introduction and see how it goes. “
Strawser said the group plans to continue fundraising for more courts, including working to secure courts in other parts of Pickaway County.
“Our long-term goal is to install two more permanent courts, fence them in and put in permanent nets,” she said. “It was our short term goal – to have two fields – and we did it. We have a group of committed people to work on our long term goals.