By Julie Johansen
One of the fastest-growing crazes in the sports world right now is pickleball, a game that is a unique blend of tennis, badminton and ping pong.
In the game, players use a paddle, volleying the ball in the same manner as tennis. However, players must serve underhand and the ball must be contacted below the waist. The ball is hit behind the service box and must reach the adjacent service box, as in tennis. Professionals say players should be stopped and set before hitting the ball.
Pickleball can be played as single or doubles. One can only score when serving and when serving, players should voice the score, much like tennis. Each game is played to 11 and the winner must win by two points.
It is a fast, fun, friendly game that appeals to all ages. Experts say it is easy to learn and play for those who have never given it a try. Set up costs are minimal, according to those who have built courts, which are smaller than tennis courts, but similar. It is a game for all generations and has had tremendous, rapid growth.
Local cities have taken note of the game’s popularity and considered placing courts in the area. Price City discussed the possibility of courts in the fall during two different city council meetings. While a decision on whether or not to proceed was not given at that time, council members said that the idea for pickleball courts was a viable one and it will be readdressed in the spring.
The new year also brought the possibility of courts to the Castle Dale City Council. In January, the council host a public hearing to garner community input on applying for a $30,000 CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) to build pickleball courts in the city. While there was no public comment made during the hearing, the council made the decision to apply for the grant. If it is awarded, another hearing will be hosted before the funds are allocated.