Sylvan Lake mayor and council learned some new skills July 4, when they learned how to play pickleball with a group that plays on a drop-in basis at the Nexsource Centre.
Mayor Megan Hanson and councillors Teresa Rilling, Jas Payne and Kjeryn Dakin tried their hand at the sport. Organizer Lori Flood said the group doesn’t have a name and isn’t an established club, but up to 40 players have taken up the sport during set times at the Nexsource Centre.
“We have a group of about 40 players; 15 to 20 that consistently show up almost daily,” said Flood. “With more exposure, we hope more people will come out and play.”
Pickleball in Sylvan Lake is drop-in for any age group. The majority of the participants are over 55 but all ages are welcome.
Currently, the facility is available twice a day. Usually seniors take to the court between 9 a.m. and noon, with the after work crowd coming in between 7 and 9 p.m.
Pickleball has been played in Sylvan Lake for about five years, said Flood.
“We play what we call social play which means everyone plays with everyone. We do have people that play here in Sylvan Lake that also attend competitions elsewhere on professional courts, but that is done separately from the group that currently attend.”
The invitation to council was a way to introduce them to one of the fastest growing sports, according to Flood. It also shows the importance for seniors to exercise and stay fit and the need for a (pickleball) facility.
There are currently some outdoor courts in the plans at Pogadl Park for 2025.
“We would like to see those built sooner.”
Newcomers are welcome anytime and a schedule can be picked up at the main reception of the Nexsource Centre. In the winter, pickleball moves to the community centre.