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Pickleball players ask Dare Board for more courts – The Outer Banks Voice

Pickleball players ask Dare Board for more courts

By Michelle Wagner | Outer Banks Voice on September 8, 2022

Say current facilities don’t meet growing demand

The pickleball phenomenon has reached Dare County. (Dare County)

The growing pickleball community in Dare County made its presence felt at the Sept. 6 meeting of the Dare County Board of Commissioners, where seven residents spoke during public comment asking for more courts as well as better access to county recreational facilities during evening and weekend hours.

Pickleball, an indoor and outdoor sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping pong and uses paddles and a ball on a 20×40 court with a net, was named the fastest growing sport in the U.S. in 2021 and 2022 by the Sports and Fitness Industry Association.

The sport’s popularity has reached Dare County, where there are more than 300 active players and their numbers are increasing, one speaker, Dave Briggman, told commissioners during the meeting. Many players live on the beach, he said, “where there are three outdoor courts and I’ll say zero to six indoor courts…and I say zero because not all the courts at the [Parks and Recreation Center in Kill Devil Hills] are available.”

The group’s core point, that the county needs to fund additional facilities for pickleball, was met with a pointed response by Dare County Commissioner Chairman Bob Woodard at the end of the Sept. 6 meeting. But the debate appears to have paved the way for more communication between the parties.

According to Dare County Parks and Recreation supervisors, there are currently four outdoor courts and six indoor courts at the Family Recreation Park in Kill Devil Hills. However, Dare County Parks and Recreation Director Tim White said that three of indoor courts at that facility are not available for part of the year because of other programming. There are four outdoor courts and three indoor courts at the Lion’s Club in Manteo and four brand-new outdoor courts in Wanchese at Walker Park.  At the Fessenden Center in Hatteras, there are two indoor courts and two outdoor courts.

Briggman and others said the county’s Parks and Recreation facilities are typically not open in the evenings, on the weekends and during the summer. They also requested that some tourism tax dollars be invested in expanding recreation opportunities and recreation infrastructure.

At the Sept. 6 meeting, the Dare County Commissioners approved a Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) that included a $453,6000 line item for the year 2028 that was partially for pickleball courts, with some of that money going to other improvements at recreational facilities.

“The number of courts will be determined by how far [that funding] will go,” County Manager Outten told the commissioners. Leftover money, he added, “could be put back into the pickleball courts depending on where they are built and what other amenities are needed.”

But several who spoke at the Sept. 6 meeting said that 2028 was too long to wait, arguing that a dedicated gym for sports such as pickleball, basketball and volleyball is sorely needed in the county.

“We can’t wait two, three, four years down the road,” Briggman told the commissioners. “The county has one of the highest revenues per resident ratios in North Carolina. We seem to have no problem spending capital money on other things. Now is the time to change the budget, now is the …….

Source: https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2022/09/08/pickleball-players-ask-dare-board-for-more-courts/

Pickleball players ask Dare Board for more courts

By Michelle Wagner | Outer Banks Voice on September 8, 2022

Say current facilities don’t meet growing demand

The pickleball phenomenon has reached Dare County. (Dare County)

The growing pickleball community in Dare County made its presence felt at the Sept. 6 meeting of the Dare County Board of Commissioners, where seven residents spoke during public comment asking for more courts as well as better access to county recreational facilities during evening and weekend hours.

Pickleball, an indoor and outdoor sport that combines elements of ten…….

Pickleball players ask Dare Board for more courts

By Michelle Wagner | Outer Banks Voice on September 8, 2022

Say current facilities don’t meet growing demand

The pickleball phenomenon has reached Dare County. (Dare County)

The growing pickleball community in Dare County made its presence felt at the Sept. 6 meeting of the Dare County Board of Commissioners, where seven residents spoke during public comment asking for more courts as well as better access to county recreational facilities during evening and weekend hours.

Pickleball, an indoor and outdoor sport that combines elements of ten…….

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