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Sundre pickleball group plans to keep growing

First outdoor tournament of the year held at the courts behind Sundre High School

SUNDRE – The effort to further revitalize and enhance the once-drastically deteriorated and scantly utilized tennis courts behind the local high school seems to keep gathering momentum.

The Sundre Pickleball Association, which on Sunday, June 2 hosted its first outdoor tournament of the summer season, recently installed protective windscreens along the entire perimeter of a fence that was anchored down just last summer, said Marie Snippa, the group’s vice-president.    

The organization has over the past few years since the initial effort to repave the old tennis courts seen the number of players continue to grow, with an active membership of individuals aged 36 to 80 now edging close to 90, said Snippa, adding about a third are from Sundre while the rest come out to play from the surrounding area.

Throughout the winter, the association books time indoors at the Sundre Community Centre’s gymnasium, but the players always look forward to being able to return outdoors.

“We are so excited because our courts are looking wonderful,” said Snippa, who on behalf of the organization expressed gratitude to both the Town of Sundre as well as Mountain View County for allocating grant funding that along with additional monies raised by the group covered the cost of installing the windscreens that went up just a few weeks ago with some help from volunteers.

The group already has another project on the docket, with plans to further upgrade the existing surface with a material more specialized for sports that will still prolong the longevity of the courts while also being more forgiving on players’ joints.

“There is no spring in asphalt,” said Snippa, adding the association has raised roughly half of the estimated cost of $42,000.  

The association has also applied for a matching grant through the provincial government’s Community Facility Enhancement Project program, she added.  

This weekend’s tournament might have been the association’s first outdoor event of the season, but it certainly won’t be the last as the group plans to hold similar events once a month, she said.

The courts – which include four pickleball courts and a traditional tennis court – are located on the Chinook’s Edge School Division property and are open to the public outside of the association’s posted times.


Simon Ducatel

About the Author: Simon Ducatel

Simon Ducatel joined Mountain View Publishing in 2015 after working for the Vulcan Advocate since 2007, and graduated among the top of his class from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology's journalism program in 2006.
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