Several mornings each week, a team of dinkers hit the new racquet courts at Douglas Park to bang around a few balls, share some laughs, and get a bit of exercise.
But for month now – as has been the case for many recreational groups – play has been on hold on public courts due to COVID-19.
Well on Monday, the sport of pickleball was reinvigorated in Langley City as Mayor Val van den Broek and recreation supervisor Karlo Tamondong participated in an official ribbon-cutting for eight new dedicated pickleball courts at the park, explained Wanda Cassidy, a player and club volunteer for Langley Area Pickleball Dinkers (or LAPD).
“We are so happy and grateful to the City of Langley for the dedicated pickleball courts now open in Douglas Park,” said Cassidy. “Thank you to the City for building these lovely courts for us!”
Consisting of around 120 local players – many who attended the court opening – LAPD will be playing five days a week on their new courts, with play starts at 9 a.m. (players need to be at the courts 15 minutes head), plus Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 6 p.m.
“When our group started playing outside, we thought we were lucky to have pickleball lines painted on what, at that time, were two tennis nets; and here we are playing on eight dedicated courts a short three years later,” she said.
“We, as a group, encourage all players of any age to join us. If you’re new to the game, we’ll give you some pointers, if you are experienced – perhaps you can show us a thing or two,” said Cassidy.
While half of the current members are seniors, she said more and more younger players are joining the sport locally and around the globe.
Due to the coronavirus, and to meet with safety regulations, each player must give his or her name and phone number, for contact tracing, Cassidy concluded.
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