Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Pickleball vs. tennis in La Mesa

Players raise issues of court use and conversions

Pickleball players on temporarily converted tennis court
Pickleball players on temporarily converted tennis court

The La Mesa Community Services Commission on January 29 denied the USA Pickleball Association's request to remove the tennis court at Collier Park and replace it with four pickleball courts.

Pickleball was created in Washington during the 1960s and is named for the creator's dog Pickles, according to a report from Mike Pacheco, the city's community services manager. The game is played with a wood or composite paddle and a perforated plastic baseball similar to a whiffle ball. Players use a net lowered to 34 inches at the center.

Pacheco said conversion would cost $13,500; an estimate consisting of $3500 for court resurfacing and $10,000 for the courts. Private funding would be required because the only money budgeted by the city was $1000 for replacing tennis nets.

Commissioner Patrick Dean cast the only vote against the motion that denied the request to install courts with permanent nets in the park located on the 4400 block of Palm Avenue. "Four pickleball courts would get more use for the city with an aging population," he said.

The commission vote called for resurfacing the court and formation of a committee consisting of tennis and pickleball players to explore shared use of the court. Their vote followed more than an hour of public comment by 23 speakers about the issue that brought about 100 people to the hearing.

Pacheco said the city council in June 2012 approved a parks master plan. That September, the commission asked city staff to add programs to Collier Park to attract more users. The city contacted the association, and portable pickleball nets were set up that month from 8 a.m. to noon on Mondays and Wednesdays; the following September, the city added pickleball play on Fridays from 8 a.m. to noon.

The morning of January 29, two nets were set up for people playing pickleball. At the evening hearing, tennis and pickleball enthusiasts spoke about the popularity of their sport and said their presence encouraged other people to feel safe and visit the park.

Michael Blakesley said emergency medical technicians told him they saw people using heroin. The park was a "cesspool. That changed with pickleball."

Mark Smelko referred to the request of a "private enterprise taking over," saying he teaches at Monte Vista High School. "Kids play tennis, not pickleball."

Justine Frazee disputed the "private designation," saying donations were requested to replace nets and balls. She and her husband, Jim, are the association's San Diego East County ambassadors. He recalled that in 2012 "there were homeless people [and] girls wearing sketchy clothes" in the park.

Gary Crossland said, "Pickleball is the fastest growing sport" in the nation. Mike Carpio said he could no longer play baseball. "No matter how young you are, you can play pickleball. I'm 80 years old."

Steve Serna said he taught his son to play tennis. "I hope my grandson will [play]. I'm saddened to think there might be an elimination of the court."

Luke Serna said the city is working on the Collier Park park master plan and suggested adding a court for "simultaneous use."

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

What a teachers union has done to Gompers

29 teachers laid off in June, re-hired in July
Next Article

North River Farms foes face lawsuit heat

If activists take Measure L off ballot, they would no longer face mounting legal fees
Pickleball players on temporarily converted tennis court
Pickleball players on temporarily converted tennis court

The La Mesa Community Services Commission on January 29 denied the USA Pickleball Association's request to remove the tennis court at Collier Park and replace it with four pickleball courts.

Pickleball was created in Washington during the 1960s and is named for the creator's dog Pickles, according to a report from Mike Pacheco, the city's community services manager. The game is played with a wood or composite paddle and a perforated plastic baseball similar to a whiffle ball. Players use a net lowered to 34 inches at the center.

Pacheco said conversion would cost $13,500; an estimate consisting of $3500 for court resurfacing and $10,000 for the courts. Private funding would be required because the only money budgeted by the city was $1000 for replacing tennis nets.

Commissioner Patrick Dean cast the only vote against the motion that denied the request to install courts with permanent nets in the park located on the 4400 block of Palm Avenue. "Four pickleball courts would get more use for the city with an aging population," he said.

The commission vote called for resurfacing the court and formation of a committee consisting of tennis and pickleball players to explore shared use of the court. Their vote followed more than an hour of public comment by 23 speakers about the issue that brought about 100 people to the hearing.

Pacheco said the city council in June 2012 approved a parks master plan. That September, the commission asked city staff to add programs to Collier Park to attract more users. The city contacted the association, and portable pickleball nets were set up that month from 8 a.m. to noon on Mondays and Wednesdays; the following September, the city added pickleball play on Fridays from 8 a.m. to noon.

The morning of January 29, two nets were set up for people playing pickleball. At the evening hearing, tennis and pickleball enthusiasts spoke about the popularity of their sport and said their presence encouraged other people to feel safe and visit the park.

Michael Blakesley said emergency medical technicians told him they saw people using heroin. The park was a "cesspool. That changed with pickleball."

Mark Smelko referred to the request of a "private enterprise taking over," saying he teaches at Monte Vista High School. "Kids play tennis, not pickleball."

Justine Frazee disputed the "private designation," saying donations were requested to replace nets and balls. She and her husband, Jim, are the association's San Diego East County ambassadors. He recalled that in 2012 "there were homeless people [and] girls wearing sketchy clothes" in the park.

Gary Crossland said, "Pickleball is the fastest growing sport" in the nation. Mike Carpio said he could no longer play baseball. "No matter how young you are, you can play pickleball. I'm 80 years old."

Steve Serna said he taught his son to play tennis. "I hope my grandson will [play]. I'm saddened to think there might be an elimination of the court."

Luke Serna said the city is working on the Collier Park park master plan and suggested adding a court for "simultaneous use."

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

What a teachers union has done to Gompers

29 teachers laid off in June, re-hired in July
Next Article

Imagine a pedestrian-friendly Kearny Mesa

Hard to consider history in 30-year plan
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close