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Pickleball Yorkton’s indoor season in full swing

The future of Pickleball in the city of Yorkton is bright and with the sport’s popularity growing with all age groups.
Sandy Persick Pickleball Yorkton member ready to hit the serve.

YORKTON - With the reopening of the Gloria Hayden Centre in September the pickleball players have taken the game indoors.

With the two indoor locations for daytime pickleball the courts have seen a substantial increase in numbers.

Both the Gallagher Center and the Gloria Hayden have designated Drop In Sports openings during the day, allocated to be either recreational or intermediate-to-advanced.

With nearly 200 pickleball members in the club, it was necessary to distinguish between the skill level of the groups coming to play.

In total the City of Yorkton has eight indoor courts, which is sufficient for our daytime players for now. But the Club’s concern is that this number will need to be addressed as our membership increases. With every ‘Learn to Play Pickleball Clinic’ we host we usually take in another eight players. PBY wants to promote the game of pickleball, but we are getting to a point where more is causing congestion with the pickleball time slots.

Another issue the Pickleball Club is struggling with is getting a Drop In Sports Spot in the evenings. The Club has booked two nights a week, Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 8-10pm. PBY is focused on our ‘working’ players that cannot come out during the days. The two rental evening spots are costly, and that fee is passed onto the players who are paying $7.00 as opposed to the $4.00 drop-in fee during the day.

The Club approached the Recreation Department to request an earlier time during the week but with the heavy demand on both the Gallagher and the Gloria Hayden Gym times from all local sports club, time slots are at a premium.

The Club is extremely grateful for the expansion of the outdoor Heritage Heights Courts next season. Where the City plans to expand the existing two tennis/pickleball courts to an additional three stand-alone pickleball courts and four additional pickleball courts lined on the present tennis court.

“Our outdoor courts within the city of Yorkton will address all our ‘outdoor’ court needs well into the future. And we are excited to see the project started this coming summer,” stated Anne Stupak PBY secretary.

Pickleball Yorkton’s David Weiman Head Coach, along with four other level one coaches, have a busy indoor season ahead.

We have several Learn-to-Play Clinics booked in the new year. The dates are set for Jan. 13, Feb. 24 and April 13.

Plus, we have clinics aimed at the pre-intermediate players to develop their skill levels on the courts. The dates for these clinics are Jan. 27, and March 10.

“Then on April 6, we will be hosting a Intermediate Clinic.

All clinics are at the Gloria Hayden. Registration can be found on the Pickleball Yorkton website.

Pickleball Yorkton has also created a Player Development Program that focuses on the competitive edge to Pickleball.

“This is the second year that the club has hosted this program, and we have seen many great results from it,” Weiman states. “Our club had several players bring home medals from the Provincial Pickleball Tournament in Warman. Plus, the club members faced some stiff competition at the Nationals in Regina this past summer and brought gold, silver and bronze in their categories and skill levels.”

The club is again offering the player development program again for a six-week long period starting in January. Limited spots are available, and registration will open Dec. 13.

The Pickleball Yorkton Club has three major tournaments scheduled for this winter.

The Mid-Winter Tournament on Feb. 10, open to teams of men, women and mixed.

Then the Men’s Only Tournament is slated for March 16, followed by the Ladies Only ‘You Go Girl’ Tournament March 23.

President Gina Realer is excited to see all the events and clinics come together.

“We have a fantastic group of very dedicated coaches and amazing people that come and play pickleball! Our goal is to keep growing this sport of Pickleball in our city, continue to address the skill development our players seek and provide the court times that allow everyone to continue to play with others either recreationally or competitively. This game can be both,” she said.

“Pickleball Yorkton did a presentation to Council seeking more space for Pickleball courts,” stated Stupak club secretary, “explaining the need for more indoor courts due to the lack of gym times available. We strongly encouraged the city to consider the feasibility of a new sport complex that would address the needs of Pickleball.’ We realize that we are not the only club seeking more gym time but after approaching schools and halls for rental space we found no time to be had -- Which came as a surprise to us. So we will use the facilities that we have and hope that other sports groups will come forward to request the same.”

As the indoor season progresses, during evening booked times, PBY has labeled one court for beginners and the other courts designated for the more advanced player. Which seems to be working well and welcomes all skill levels to come out Tuesdays and Thursday evenings.

The future of Pickleball in the city of Yorkton is bright and with the sport’s popularity growing with all age groups, it will only increase the demand for more courts.

Pickleball was deemed to be only a sport for seniors, but as the game develops, it is fast becoming the racket sport of choice for players of all ages. Seniors dominate the courts during the day, seeking fitness and fun. But it goes beyond that, the socializing and the friendships forged from this game is incredibly important to keep people active, engaged and connected. “It’s better than coffee row,” commented one player on the bench.