Forbes: Will Travel for Pickleball


When you think about traveling to Southern California, visions of sunshine and beaches dance in your head. Certainly not … pickleball? 

“Nationwide, the popularity of pickleball is on the rise and as a wellness resort it’s a trend we’ve had on our radar,” says Nusrat Mirza, General Manager of Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa.

In fact, Mirza and team have rolled out a new package for potential guests, based entirely around this charming sport. According to the USA Pickleball Association, there are 3.1 million pickeball players across the country. 

From now until the end of June, pickleball enthusiasts can book a package (starting at $299) that includes an hour of instruction from champion Lon Krantz, a complimentary reusable water bottle, celebratory Blood Mary (topped with a pickle, of course) and unlimited time and access to the courts.

As part of their current renovation, set to be done this Spring, the property will be adding four new pickleball courts, bringing the total to eight.

If pickleball isn’t your thing, the Marriot offers a variety of other opportunities to incorporate wellness into your stay. Bikes are readily available for those who prefer pedaling the local area and tennis and basketball courts beckon you to lace up your sneakers. If you’re looking to get into the water, enjoy one of the three pools on-site, including a lap pool.

A 6,000 square foot, two-story fitness center provides guests with all of your state-of-the-art, standard gym equipment. Complimentary exercise classes are also an option for those who need some motivation or prefer a group setting. 

Guests here enjoy complimentary yoga classes.

Additionally, the resort has an impressive spa and wellness program which offers customizable wellness retreats and a Spa Cafe designed around “conscious cuisine.”  

The idea came from Executive Chef, Michael Poompan, who wanted to incorporate nutrition while taking into consideration different dietary needs. With a solid understanding of the relationship between food and its ability to impact both our mind and body, “conscious cuisine” was born. A fun aspect of this idea the “Wellness Bento Box,” which can be customized with an array of healthy sides, proteins, sandwiches and entrées. Cold-pressed juices are also available.

Of course wellness doesn’t always mean you are on-the-move or indulging in an array of spa treatments. It can simply mean, being still and taking in the beauty around you. The 16-acre waterfront that is home to the Coronado Marriott allows for exactly these moments of solitude. Whether peering at the San Diego city skyline or taking in the salted-scent of the sea, a tranquil energy is bound to find you.

“Our goal is to offer activities, spaces, and amenities that help travelers achieve physical and mental well-being” says Mirza. 

And pickleball is just one of the ways they are able to do so. 

Ruidoso, New Mexico: Pickleball Club active year-round and growing fast – Watch the Video!

Members of the Ruidoso Pickleball Club have been active in the Ruidoso area and other parts of  Lincoln County for nearly a decade.

The club is active all year and its membership is growing. Pickleball is a game that can be enjoyed by both young and old, said club spokesman Alison Baker.

The rules are simple and the game is easy for beginners to learn, but can develop into a quick, fast-paced, competitive game for experienced players.

More: Ruidoso’s Pickleball Championships draws 160 players

Pickleball is played indoors or outdoors on a badminton-sized court using a slightly modified tennis net.

Pickleball is played with a paddle and a plastic ball with holes and played as
doubles or singles.

Pickleball advocates push for dedicated pickleball courts, citing the sport’s big benefits for Ruidoso.Dianne L Stallings, Ruidoso News

Many of the local RPC players travel in and out of New Mexico to compete in tournaments with players from all parts of the country.

More: Ruidoso Pickleball Club players win medals at national tournament

The RPC players always are building their skill set and they have a reputation of being excellent competitors. They often bring home medals from their competitions.

The RPC hosts one or two sanctioned tournaments each summer, attracting up to 150 players at each event. Many of the players who come to Ruidoso to play, travel from Arizona and Texas to beat the summer heat. At our June, 2018 tournament, there were players from nine states.

More: Fund for dedicated pickleball courts grows

Currently, PRC members play at White Mountain Recreation Complex and at Horton Gym. They welcome new players of all ages.

The club also is building a fund to help offset the cost of creating dedicated courts for pickleball. 

Contact Baker at 609-468-1950 or Sherry Anderson at 512-921-5406 for more information, or go to

Crossville, Tennessee: With Apologies to Billie Jean King!

“Tennis [and pickleball] can be defined as violent action taking place in an atmosphere of total tranquility.”  —Billie Jean King 

Because golf courses are large, and because Fairfield Glade has five of them, there is a lot of conversation about the links in and around our community. As a result, the world-class Fairfield Glade Racquet Center doesn’t get as much time in the spotlight as it deserves. We’re here today to do something about that.

We extend our apologies to tennis legend Billie Jean King for the addition of “and pickleball” to her quote above. Truth be told, at this point in her life, King may have added this popular new sport to her game repertoire as well.

The Fairfield Glade Racquet Center

King’s quote says everything about the passion our players bring to racquet sports contrasting with the peaceful atmosphere in which they’re played here at Fairfield Glade. And for those of you drawn to the lines and nets of tennis and pickleball, you already know what a beautifully equipped facility the center is. For everyone else, here is what you should know about the Fairfield Glade Racquet Center:

It’s located across the street from The Square. The center has four outdoor clay tennis courts, four indoor tennis courts and eight outdoor pickleball courts. Our Racquet Center is the only public facility between Knoxville and Nashville with indoor courts. Inside is a pro shop and viewing area for the indoor courts. Here you’ll find everything you need to engage in these two great games for fun and fitness.

Getting Started in Tennis or Pickleball

For new players, the center offers five-week pickleball and tennis apprentice classes for just $50. And that includes a racquet or paddle. You’ll absorb the vernacular, rules, the moves and even the culture. You’ll learn to dink and drive and how to avoid foot faults and falafels.  

The pickleball apprentice class starts in March, and you can sign up now at the center. The tennis apprentice class will begin in May.

Getting Better in Your Game

The Racquet Center has two USPTA certified instructors; William Taylor, director of racquet sports, and Dylan Nelson, assistant racquet sports professional. They offer both private and group lessons in tennis and pickleball.  

There are also clinics throughout the week. (Pickleball clinics are held April through October.)

Looking to Play?

If you’re new to the area and wanting to play, there are opportunities throughout the week for players to just drop in and play either tennis or pickleball without making a reservation. It’s a great way to meet new players. Stop by the Racquet Center and check the times for tennis and pickleball drop-ins.

For any additional information on racquet sports or to sign-up for any of the activities offered, stop on by, call 484-3758 or email We can’t wait to get you on the court.

One Last Thing … The Name Pickleball

You’ve read all the way to the end, and you’re still curious about the name pickleball, aren’t you? Well, here’s how the story goes regarding the origin of the game and its name. 

Pickleball was invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, a short ferry ride from Seattle, WA. Three men, Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell and Barney McCallum — whose children were bored with their usual summertime activities — made up the rules, collected the equipment and turned it all over to their kids. Before long the adults were playing, and the rest is history as they say.

The Pritchards had a cocker spaniel named Pickles. Whenever a ball would come his way, he’d grab it in his mouth and go hide it in the bushes. You might say it became Pickles’ ball. 

According to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association’s 2017 Pickleball Participant Report, pickleball had 2.815 million players in the U.S. alone.

Whether you choose a racquet or a paddle, we’d love to see you at the Racquet Center. It’s a great source of fun. Just keep an eye out for pickles.

• • •

FGCC Board of Directors and Senior Management Team (SMT)

Abingdon, Virginia: Fans of pickleball lobby to build fields

ABINGDON, Va. — I didn’t see any of the pickleball people at the most recent work session held by the Abingdon Town Council on Feb. 20.

But, boy, they sure did pack the audience at the January work session on the lower level of town hall.

That month, several pickleball players expressed interest in Abingdon moving forward with the construction of a site for playing pickleball.

What’s this?

Well, this sport is obviously not as well-known as tennis, a sport with courts that have been sometimes borrowed by pickleball players in Abingdon.

It’s not as well-known as badminton, either.

Still, in recent years, pickleball has become increasingly popular among both indoor and outdoor sports enthusiasts.

Pickleball can be played with a simple paddle and plastic ball. It got its start by three fathers: Congressman Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell and Barney McCallum. These men came up with rules that closely followed badminton. Yet, all along, they wanted this game to be easy and enjoyed by all family members.

Pickleball can be played both indoors and outdoors. And, players say, it’s kind of like a cross between tennis, badminton and pingpong.

The plan to play pickleball in Abingdon has now made it into the most recent report to the Town Council by the interim town manager, Ken Vittum.

The report states: “Pickleball Courts — Staff is moving ahead with leasing a site at the Community Center for two courts. The funds are in the new budget and work would be done this summer to install the new courts.”

The plan to build pickleball courts was also reported at the work session on Feb. 20 by Kevin Worley, the town’s director of outdoor parks and recreation.

Worley said he made a recent visit to the community center, where he’s selected a spot to begin building pickleball courts as early as July.

“That site works very well for a lot of reasons,” Worley told the town council.

For one, it would provide a shelter in case of emergencies.

Restrooms, parking and lunch options are also on-site, Worley said.

“It would also get more foot traffic into the community center and more recognition,” Worley said. “Therefore, the sidenote for that is they’re getting more people in financially supporting the facility. So, I think, that could be a very positive thing.”

Monroe, Connecticut: Parks & Rec Sponsors Pickleball

MONROE — The Parks and Recreation Department will sponsor indoor pickleball for adults 18 and older in the gym of Monroe Elementary School, 375 Monroe Turnpike.

Sessions are from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Fridays, through March 22. Registration is required and limited to eight players per time slot. The cost is $15 for residents and $20 for non-residents.

For more information, visit the Monroe Parks and Recreation web site at

Klamath Falls, Oregon: Pickleball Classes All Year

Pickleball 101 classes will be on the second Saturday of each month throughout the year, with Pickleball 102 set for the second Sundays of the month, all at the Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church gym.

Saturday classes will run from 9 a.m.-noon. Players are expected to provide their own water, court shoes (or tennis shoes) and comfortable clothing. Nets, paddles and balls will be provided by the Klamath Basin Pickleball Association.

Sunday sessions will be used to put skills learned in class into practice.