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VIDEO: Picklers rally for court expansion at Parkinson Recreation Centre

Pickleball enthusiasts in Kelowna are growing impatient.

They believe it's time to serve up the planned expansion of the courts at Parkinson.

The president of Pickleball Kelowna Club is quick to express her appreciation for the increase in court space that's been created.

"There's nine new courts going out at Glenmore Sports Park, and there will be three at the DeHart Park," pointed out Jamie Menzies.

But she argues the city is going about things in the wrong order.

"Ideally, we would like the new 24 courts at Parkinson first," said Menzies.

"Pickleball is a hub sport. It's not meant to be played across the city in little groups like that."

Hardcore pickleball enthusiasts say the city has whiffed on this one, by failing to recognize the social element that is such a big part of the sport.

"We have 600 members, so having a hub where they can all come and be involved," she said, "that's the ticket."

It's the friendships, Menzies argues it's the togetherness of it all and the friendships that go along with it, that matter most.

"That's been the foundation of pickleball since its inception," she said. "We strive to keep that going."

Some people don't like the sound of pickleball in their neighbourhood, but they will likely have to get used to the racket.

It's Canada's fastest-growing sport with about 1.4 million picklers in the country at last count, and Kelowna is no exception.

"We've been waiting patiently to get new courts at Parkinson and they are coming," she admits.

"It's just, we're getting impatient."

The City of Kelowna points out the new paddle sport strategy endorsed in September is well underway and it promises more facilities for both pickleball and tennis.

"The principal framework of the strategy is intended to meet immediate and future growth needs for both sports," said Parks Planner Stefan Johansson. The plan includes new outdoor and indoor facilities.

The idea is to create facilities that are attractive for the general public and organized groups.

With that in mind, plans include adding to feature destination courts such as Parkinson, and satellite hub courts, such as those at DeHart Community Park.

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