OB Planning Board Reaches ‘Compromise’ on Pickelball vs. Tennis at Robb Field

by on March 10, 2022 · 30 comments

in Ocean Beach, Sports

By Geoff Page

Pickleball versus Tennis

The clash of an old venerable sport and a much, much younger, but fast-growing sport was the highlight of the regular monthly meeting  of the Ocean Beach Planning Board, Wednesday, March 2nd.

The sport with a history that goes back about 1,000 years is tennis. The younger sport with a history that only goes as far back as 1965 is called pickleball.

It is important to deal with its name first. Just hearing the name evokes a smile of amusement. It just sounds silly when first heard. Perhaps seeing how the name came about will temper that reaction and will prompt a more respectful reception.

Here is the explanation from a newsletter titled “The Pickle Boat: Odds & Ends” issued by a pickleball club in Colorado:

In sailing, the pickle boat is the last boat to finish in a race. The term is said to have come from a practice of the fishing fleets, when the last boat of a flotilla to return to port was the boat that stayed at sea while the crew “pickled” the catch with brine.

From that came the pickle boat in competitive rowing. When crews face off the ones, twos and threes pair up in match races. To give all rowers an opportunity to compete, the “leftover” rowers form teams in the last race of the day – the pickle boats. The Pritchard family in Seattle is credited with having invented the game which they said entailed “leftovers” of tennis, ping pong, badminton and platform tennis.”

The conflict between the two sports is about the tennis courts at Robb Field. And it is the kind of issue planning boards were made for.

Two people, Stefan Boyland and Mike Shinzaki, made a PowerPoint presentation laying out their proposal to convert all of the Robb Field tennis courts to pickleball courts and move all tennis over to the Barnes Tennis Center east of Nimitz.

The two men represent pickleball in some manner but their presentation did not contain the name of a business or an organization.

This was a bold proposal – but poorly presented. In his opening sentences, Shinzaki stated,

“Our proposal is to repurpose vastly underutilized tennis courts at Robb Field into premium pickleball facilities.”

That lit the fuse. At the heart of the whole debate is how much are the courts at Robb Field and the Barnes Center are actually used.

Characterizing the existing facilities as “vastly” underutilized was a mistake. It was the kind of unnecessary hyperbole that raises a red flag for some. Had they just said underutilized, the effect would have been less incendiary.

The pickleball proponents stated they requested the usage logs for both Barnes and Robb Field but were denied access to them. The pickleballers claimed they gathered their own data taking pictures and videos of both facilities at all times of the day they were open. They concluded the courts were only used 25% of the available time.

This figure was roundly denounced by tennis proponents, who out-numbered the pickleball proponents by a considerable margin. Among them were representatives of the Peninsula Tennis Club, or PTC, a non-profit that has been operating the Robb Field courts for decades.

According to one speaker, the PTC has 400 members and services an additional 900 people who are not members. Big numbers.

What was noticeably missing from the tennis proponent’s side was any specific information from their logs regarding usage. It is possible that those logs don’t refute the pickleballers’ claim about the available courts being underutilized.

The reason why usage even matters is that the pickleballers want to create playing courts quickly by using available facilities. They acknowledge that getting courts built on city property would be a very difficult and costly process. If they are correct about the low usage at both Robb Field and Barnes, their idea might be something the community should consider.

Tennis courts are easily converted into pickleball courts. The striping and the nets are changed but the playing surface is already in place. According to the presenters, the 12 Robb Field tennis courts can be turned into 36 pickleball courts accommodating exponentially more players.

Their proposal includes upgrading everything, adding covered areas, and new restrooms — all to the tune of $2.5 million over five years.

Money is one complicated area. The PTC is non-profit and is mainly operated by local tennis lovers who have been taking care of maintaining the courts and area around the courts. Barnes is more expensive to join because it is not a non-profit. The pickleballers are a for-profit enterprise who plan to recoup their costs and make money.

This was serious issue before the OBPB.  Should a long-standing non-profit be kicked out in favor of a for-profit entity? This generally does not go over well with the OB crowd, allowing private enterprise to use public property for profit.

No one mentioned any problems with how the PTC has been managing the courts. Only one person related a bad experience and that story sounded odd.

Barnes is another business entity and whether or not it is willing or able to accommodate all the Robb field tennis players is unknown. But, the meshing of a non-profit with a for-profit business could be tricky.

But, there are other serious considerations. According to available statistics, pickleball is the fastest growing sport in the country.  If tennis players look skyward, they will see a tsunami of baby boomer pickleballers about to engulf them. If there is a demand for courts now, it will only increase as boomers retire.

Unlike tennis, seniors – not just young seniors – can easily play pickleball. There is very little actual movement around the court, which eliminates running and lunging for balls as happens in tennis. Those types of movements become too challenging as people age.

The appeal of pickleball to seniors was brought home for this writer after viewing a New York Times documentary “Some Kind of Heaven.” It is about a senior retirement community in Florida, The Villages, like none other in the country, based on its size.

The Villages is a community of about 130,000 over 55 seniors. It is hard to take your eyes off the film for many reasons. What is relevant here is that pickleball was the number one pastime. Footage clearly showed advanced seniors enthusiastically paddling balls on pickleball courts. Those images show the future.

Another consideration for the OBPB was that pickleball accommodates more people on each court than tennis does with. A tennis court is 36 x 78 = 2,808/SF.  A pickleball court is 20 x 44 = 880/SF. This means 3.5 pickleball courts can be placed in the footprint of one tennis court.

The proponent’s plan is for 36 courts. If all the courts are occupied playing doubles tennis, that would total 48 people. If all the courts are occupied playing doubles pickleball, that would total 144 people. Playing singles would be 24 tennis players to 72 pickleball players.

This is a powerful argument, providing something so many more people could enjoy in an existing space.

If the increase in the number of players is the upside, one downside is parking. As one person at the meeting noted, trying to find a parking spot at Robb Field on many days, competing with soccer and other sports, is very hard. Bringing this many additional people would exacerbate that problem.

There was clearly little appetite for supporting the pickleball proposal to completely take over Robb Field.  But, board members wrestled with it because there clearly are positive aspects of the pickleballers’ proposal. The Board looked for a compromise.

Some solutions were suggested such as joint use of courts for both sports.  According to the proponents, this has been tried and apparently proven unworkable in other cities. Striping differences and different net height were just two factors. In comparing the two, common sense seems to indicate this would be very complicated.

Others at the meeting thought building new facilities made the most sense instead of fighting over limited available facilities. This is what needs to happen but the pressure needs to be dialed up to get the city on board. Another solution would be to build courts on private land. These are long-term solutions.

What the board finally voted on was a compromise that the pickleballers offered. The pickleball presenters said, very quickly at the end of their slide show, that they would be satisfied having half of the Robb Field courts if they could not get it all.

This is feasible because the 12 courts are separated by fencing with six courts in each of two fenced in enclosures.  After a whole presentation about all 12 existing courts, it seemed odd this was thrown in at the last minute.  Having seen manipulation of the public by many agencies in the past, perhaps this was not odd after all.

A time-honored tactic used to get folks to vote your way is to begin by proposing something utterly unacceptable, that you have no intention of getting. This heats up the parties as they rail against the proposal.

Then, cool them down by offering a “compromise” that consists of what you are really after. Everyone is so relieved that the awful proposal is off the table that any heat or scrutiny your true proposal may have encountered never happens.

This is, by no means an accusation that the pickleballers did anything devious. But, if they did take a page from the agency/developer playbook, it worked well.

The OPPB voted to give the pickleballers the six courts for a one-year trial. There is no certainty that this will happen, this is just a board recommendation. Considering both sides of the issue, a compromise was reasonable. Board support to fully accept or fully reject the pickleball proposal was not there.

If this were to occur, management of only six remaining courts may be a problem for PTC and the willingness of the volunteers to continue while accepting a diminished role. However, if pickleball proves to be as popular as it may be after a year, the other six tennis courts may again be up for discussion.

For more information, contact:  Stefan Boyland  – stefan@pickleball-sd.com or Mike Shinzaki – mike@pickleball-sd.com.

Protect Our Communities Foundation – Community Choice Energy

There was a presentation by the Protect Our Communities Foundation. The Rag reported on this same presentation when the group came before the Midway-Pacific Highway Planning Group in February. The following is from the report on that meeting.

Sonja Robinson, representing the Protect Our Communities Foundation, gave a presentation on Community Choice Energy. This has been in the news for the past several years as an alternative to using San Diego Gas & Electric. Energy rates are higher in San Diego than any other place in the country and community choice is touted as a way to lower those costs.

Apparently, a large part of San Diego’s energy costs results from having to transmit the energy from a far distance. Community choice would incorporate other local energy sources with rooftop solar being a big part of that. SDG&E does not like the solar business. It is proposing a monthly rate hike to the fee residents, who get most of their energy from rooftop solar panels, already pay.

Residents with rooftop solar pay a small fee to SDG&E for use of the electrical system. The proposed fee increase is so drastic that, according to Robinson, it would kill the rooftop solar industry.

The Foundation then announced a forum that already took place at the end of February. The list of discussion topics for that forum illustrate the Foundation’s focus.

The discussion topics were:

  •  Local solar energy 101: The 3E’s (energy, equity, and economics)
  • SDG&E, highest rates in the country – learn how the NEM decision impacts us?
  • San Diego Community Power – a focus on local solar with local benefits
  • Public power in San Diego (San Diegans option to reduce our rates)
  • San Vicente pumped energy storage – does it have a role to play?

For more information go to http://protectourcommunities.org/?s=community+choice+energy.

The point is to rally people to influence the Public Utilities Commission enough to deny the rate hike request by SDG&E.

Robinson also mentioned a public power feasibility study the city is conducting. A good explanation of that can be found here  https://www.publicpower.org/periodical/article/san-diego-city-council-members-unveil-plan-includes-municipalization-study.

District 2 council race

Three candidates for the District 2 council seat this year attended the meeting.

The first was Jennifer Campbell. Virtually the first thing out of Campbell’s mouth was “I’m sorry I don’t have much time.” Code for a brief pat on my back, no questions please. But, someone did ask a question before Campbell could escape. Part way through her answer, her representative Teddy Martinez, ran a blocking defense jumping in to take over, allowing Campbell to escape any more questioning.

The other two candidates were Joel Day and Mandy Havlik who also made campaign-style speeches. It was odd because Day and Havlik have already appeared before the OBPB announcing their candidacies. There was nothing on the agenda about Campbell’s appearance, perhaps the word got out.

Projects – 4605 Santa Cruz

There was only one project on the agenda. It involved splitting an approximately 7,000/SF lot in two at 4605 Santa Cruz. An existing home will remain on one lot and a new 2,400/SF house would be built on the other lot. The property is in an area zoned for two dwelling units on the lot. The difference in this case is the lot split so the properties can be sold separately. It passed unanimously by the board.

Ocean Beach Library

The Friends of the Library said they met with the city the week before and that everyone wants to have a public meeting including the city, the OBPB, the OB Town Council, and anyone else interested to discuss the design. Someone needs to step up and organize this meeting. The last meeting was organized by the OBPB.

It was mentioned that OB is one of only two libraries still closed in the city. One issue is staffing. This seems very strange considering the library’s location and the plans to expand and remodel it. Those plans, though, seem to keep moving off into the distance.

Arts and Culture Commission Arts Impact Map

Board member Tracy Dezenzo, who is also a commissioner on the Arts and Culture Commission, provide information about an arts impact map. The city’s March 2 press release explained it.

“SAN DIEGO – Want to see the impact of arts and culture in your neighborhood? The City of San Diego has published data from the past fiscal year that highlights City-funded nonprofit arts and culture organizations in areas citywide. The annual update to the data-driven and multilayered mapping tool, launched in 2019, displays the meaningful impact these organizations have had in neighborhoods through performances, exhibits, festivals and arts education, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The press release with more information can be found here

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

kh March 10, 2022 at 3:01 pm

Barnes Tennis Center is on leased city land and is owned/operated by Youth Tennis San Diego, which is a non-profit according to their website. They do not restrict membership to only youth, although their fees are about twice that of Peninsula Tennis Club. Peninsula’s courts are also on city land. So both facilities are private use of city land, as in you must pay them to enter and use the facility, as would a conversion to Pickleball use. At the meeting someone mentioned the Robb field courts used to be public. That history and who originally funded them is unknown to me, but I understand that both organizations pay for upkeep to the facilities.

The board recommended repurposing 4 of the 12 courts at Robb Field. This would leave 8 for tennis, and the remainder would fit about 12 pickleball courts depending on how it’s striped. The relevance of the the organizations being profit vs. non-profit is less relevant to me than how well the space will be utilized. If pickleball is in high demand that will become evident quickly even if it’s only 1/3 of the facility. There are already many options for tennis players in the city, but very few for pickleball.

The city should absolutely commit to providing low-cost and free facilities to meet the ever-evolving recreational needs of residents, but anyone familiar with the city CIP process knows that erecting new facilities is a very long and arduous process. So we should also consider easier ways to serve this demand, even if it includes reevaluating existing leases of public land to ensure they are well utilized.


Geoff Page March 11, 2022 at 2:50 pm

Thank you, kh, for the correction about Barnes being a non-profit, I thought I heard it was for-profit because the fees were described as noticeably higher than and Robb Field. I agree that it really isn’t an issue other than a difficulty in merging the two tennis organizations.

As for the number of courts to be converted to pickleball, I went back to the video on Facebook and the original motion was for half of the 12 courts to be converted for a one-year trial. That failed because the vote was a 6-6 tie, with two board members not present. Board member Klein then moved to convert four of the courts, kh is correct.

This option was not suggested by the pickleballers and they commented in the chat that this was not an option for them. It really makes no sense. In order to do this, another fence line would have to be built in the middle of one of the already fenced-in enclosures. Four courts would probably not be enough to make the venture worthwhile.

Personally, I think the board should have tabled this to think about it more and maybe vote next month after getting the actual usage logs from both facilities. That is where the rubber meets the road. If the pickleballer claim that both places are under used, their proposal should be taken more seriously. On top of that, the new 2022 board will be seated next month.

I agree that facilities need to made available, this is definitely coming.

My apologies for the two errors.


kh March 14, 2022 at 2:55 pm

I don’t believe the presenters made any comments one way or the other on the feasibility of converting 4 courts, but it’s probably fair to say they weren’t pleased with the outcome. Regardless, chain link fences are cheap.

I didn’t like the motion, but I voted for it because it seemed to be the only one that would give the pickleball organizers any support, even compared to the option of tabling it.


Geoff Page March 14, 2022 at 3:49 pm

Check the chat comments, kh, it was one of the presenters that said the four court choice was not an option, I believe.

Chain link may be cheap compared to some things, but this would be a long, very high fence like the perimeter. And, who pays for it? No, it would have been easier and cheaper to give them one half the courts.

But, I really think the board should have tabled it, without usage statistics, this was just an empty argument.


Nanci Kelly March 11, 2022 at 12:30 am

I could not attend the meeting but if I had I would have spoken to the issue that you mentioned of a for-profit entity utilizing our public property. I’m surprised that there wasn’t more concern expressed. I can see both sides of the use issue as I have family/friends who are PTC members as well as some who are pickleballers, so a compromise trial seems reasonable. However, I feel that the pickleball program should be operated by a non-profit pickleball club which is organized with similar structure and guidelines as the PTC. I cannot see how there is any justification for a profit-based entity to use our park facilities to generate that profit. BTW, as kh mentioned, it is also my understanding that Barnes is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.


Gary Wonacott March 11, 2022 at 8:55 am

The idea of sharing courts at Robb Field is unworkable. I am also a member of the San Diego Tennis and Racket Club, and we have substantial court vacancies during the afternoons. Also, there are times with usage is more than one-hundred percent at Rob Field with the 12 courts, so taking away six would substantially impact tennis play. If this company wants to operate for profit, then it is a simple matter of finding the right small warehouse that already has concrete floors, just as the fitness centers have done. While tennis can be played indoors, it is far easier for Pickle Ball to be played inside as the lobs do not go nearly as high. Also, we have found at SDTRC that it is a pain in the butt to have to listen to the pickle balls. I believe that neighbors at SDTRC had to be paid to put up with this noise.


bobo March 11, 2022 at 1:12 pm

The courts at Robb Field are owned by the citizens of SD and not any “club”. If it were up to me, I’d bulldoze the whole facility and put in basketball courts.


Geoff Page March 14, 2022 at 3:55 pm

Glad it’s not up to you, bobo, and will fall to more reasonable people.


Geoff Page March 11, 2022 at 2:53 pm

Playing indoors seems like a very strange idea for a place like San Diego. If I was a pickleballer, I would not be in favor of that idea at all.

The noise does seem to be a legitimate complaint, which makes the idea of Robb Field ever smarter as it is not near any residences.


Vern March 11, 2022 at 11:13 am

Can pickleball use similar equipment to badminton? This would make it quieter, allow for these smaller court sizes and possibly be played at parks, on grass, so when people fall down and can’t get up, they may actually suffer less severe injuries.


Geoff Page March 11, 2022 at 2:54 pm

According to the history I read, Vern, it was for want of a lost shuttlecock that pickleball was born.


Laura Dennison March 12, 2022 at 7:29 pm

Hi Geoff, Thanks for the great synopsis of the OB Planning Board Meeting. I have one slight edit. The City will be contacting the Friends, the OBPB and the OBTC when they have the draft plans drawn. And I know all three of these OB groups will get the meeting organized when the City gives us the OK! And yes, you are right, we are still one of two libraries closed. They are hiring librarian and staff positions and filling vacancies at the larger libraries first. Sigh…


Gary Wonacott March 13, 2022 at 7:09 am

My only point was that tennis generally benefits from playing out-doors given the lobs that are typically two to three times, maybe more, higher compared to lobs in pickle ball. Tennis needs to be played outdoors; pickle ball not. If the pickle ball is for profit, then should be easy to find an indoor facility that would allow the pickel ballers to play from 6 am to midnight with lights. There are many in door badminton facilities in cold countries. Also, the sound would be contained within the building. I suppose the gym in Balboa Park is still being used. Or maybe you team up with a fitness center that already has space available. The more I think about it, the more it makes sense.


Geoff Page March 14, 2022 at 11:45 am

Gary, playing sports indoors is something done in many parts of the country because of the lousy weather. In some places, indoors sports predominate. Not here. We live in a place that allows everything to be done outdoors comfortably. I’m not a pickleballer but if I was, I would never agree to playing indoors.


Gary Wonacott March 14, 2022 at 12:28 pm

This is a for profit pickle ball organization, or company. Rather than shut down tennis courts, I am suggesting that if these folks want to get their company going, perhaps they need to start in doors and then once they prove that they have a profitable business, then perhaps they can afford an outdoor facility.

Some people would like to live near the coast, but find they must start with a house that is inland, and then once they build up some equity, move. Same deal.


Geoff Page March 14, 2022 at 12:34 pm

I’m not in favor of shutting down tennis courts either. But, I would like to see the usage information from Robb and from Barnes. If these really are under-utilized, then maybe some consolidation and conversion would be appropriate.

I’m guessing the profitability is based on having use of public property and not having to pay for leasing or buying a building. The issue is sensible use of public resources. I’d rather they pursue building new facilities on park land but in order to turn up the heat, they need players to lobby for it. For that to happen, they need more people exposed to the sport. Starting with a few courts at Robb field makes sense in that regard.


Gary Wonacott March 14, 2022 at 1:55 pm

OK, my last comment. I am a member at both the SDTRC and Peninsula. I can tell you that utilization is similar at both, with not that many courts being used after noon until the evening. Also, there are strong rumors that SDTRC will shut down in the next few years leaving hundreds of tennis players to find other facilities.

Also, they initially tried to share courts between pickle ball and tennis at SDTRC, and it did not work. Sitting down tennis courts or trying to share courts at Peninsula is not just a bad idea especially since many of us have contributed to the courts and facilities over the years at Peninsula, so not really fair. Also, let them spend the first five years indoors and then they can get their own courses.


Geoff Page March 14, 2022 at 3:54 pm

Why would the SDTRC shut down if tennis is popular, is there a reason?

I agree that sharing the same courts is a bad idea, that can be seen just looking at both layouts.

As for the contribution to the Peninsula courts, I assume you mean the cost to play there. Not sure that counts as a “contribution.”

In the end, it’s about what the public wants today. Fairness does not come into play, if more people now prefer pickleball, then the stewards of public lands need to consider that.


Pickleball SD March 16, 2022 at 11:39 am

Hi there. Thanks for the writeup. As one of the presenters, I would like to reiterate a couple points from the presentation:

-Data will be released the first week of April, showing ~25% utilization rates.

-We will guarantee affordable pricing (a proposed half that of the current tennis facility), higher utilization rates and transparency, and regularly publish our usage data, all as as terms of a permit and lease.

-We have 4,000 local residents on a formal petition and over 10,000 letters of support to the City. We proposed half (repurposing six tennis courts into 18 pickleball courts) to show flexibility, but 36 is what we believe makes the most sense for the broader community.

-We are scheduled to present to the Mission Bay Parks Committee on April 5th if you’d like to come check it out.

You are welcome to email us at info@pickleball-sd.com if you have any questions or would like to report on the topic further in the future.


Geoff Page March 16, 2022 at 1:37 pm

Pickleball SD, I would like to clear one thing up. Your presentation did not seem to show a name for your company or business, unless I missed it. You did provide your names and email addresses. What is the business name and is there a website, all I see so far are emails. This would be nice to know, thanks.


Vern March 16, 2022 at 4:18 pm

Geoff, website looks like its https://www.pickleball-sd.com/
(Still, it should be called “Pickleminton”).


Pickleball SD March 23, 2022 at 12:01 pm

Most questions we’ve seen here are outlined in our FAQ, which you can find here: https://www.pickleball-sd.com/post/robb-field-pickleball-faq

Don’t hesitate to email info@pickleball-sd.com with any further questions. And again, we invite you to visit the April 5th Mission Bay Parks Committee meeting!


Geoff Page March 23, 2022 at 12:11 pm

Ok, there is a lot of good information at that link.

But, my question is not answered there. To put it simply, if the city agrees to lease courts for pickleball, what will be the name of the entity signing the lease with the city?


Vern March 23, 2022 at 7:13 pm

So the taxpayers hand off existing taxpayer-funded facilities to “two guys”?


FYI, “…it’s better for the park to be crowded…”= YIMBY land grab


marco March 25, 2022 at 11:52 pm

PTC and Barnes really need to produce utilization numbers. Also, since folks are talking about profit, how much do the tennis instructors at the facilities pocket/profit while teaching on public courts? It’s my understanding that they get paid in cash, so can’t be tracked, and none of it goes to the City.


Geoff Page March 16, 2022 at 4:29 pm

Yea, thanks, Vern but it doesn’t say anything about who is actually backing this effort that I can see. There is no business entity listed, it just has these two guys who are pickleball professionals. Are they funding this with their own money? It doesn’t say but I have to wonder if being a pro pickleballer is incredibly lucrative.


nostalgic March 23, 2022 at 2:21 pm

National Pickleball Hall of Fame champions in Carlsbad!! To quote “–at the Pickleball Club of Carlsbad, a former Sears store that’s been reborn with halogen-lit courts.” (AARP Magazine – most of you too young to subscribe)


nostalgic March 24, 2022 at 6:47 am

Pickleball can be profitable – this is from the Carlsbad Pickleball web site:
$60 1hr Private Lesson ($55 for members)
$70 1hr Doubles Lesson ($65 for members)
$80 1hr Group Lesson ($75 for members)


Gary Wonacott March 24, 2022 at 7:16 am

Yes, there are hours of the day when the tennis courts are used with greater numbers and there are hours of the day when they are more sparsely used. But so is the boardwalk in Mission Beach. You don’t repurpose the boardwalk during the times more sparsely used by walkers, for say high speed scooter riders.


Judith Fisher April 24, 2022 at 2:07 pm

I am a member of PTC and want to respond to the utilization issue. Like with any activity, tennis courts at PTC and Barnes are busier during mornings and afternoons due to peoples work/school schedule. We don’t call the big grassy area at Robb Field under utilized just because Albion soccer and softball don’t play during school time.
– During prime times PTC is 75-100% used.
-PTC offers clinics every morning of the week, one evening, and two on Sundays (due to its high demand); it also has an afternoon Junior clinic (total of 10 clinics a week)
– PTC offers several days a week morning and afternoon drop in tennis, league play, member sign up for courts as well as non-member drop in. Youth 18 and under play for free.
– The Special Use Permit PTC signs with the City of San Diego requires PTC to have 20% of courts available for public non-member play (that equals to 202 hours a week or 2.4 courts a day)
– PTC is the home court for Point Loma High School boys and girls tennis teams for practices and matches. Due to non-availability of courts after school their teams already have to practice before school early mornings. There are no alternative tennis courts available for The Pointers!
– There are middle school PE classes at PTC.
– PTC members recently raised $100,000 for improvements that have been completed, including resurfacing and new windscreens. This is a clear demonstration of community support for tennis at PTC and not hypothetical!
– Barnes Tennis Center is not able to absorb 1,500 members and non-members. They are already near capacity at normal tennis playing times, primarily with youth tennis. Barnes is a Youth Tennis Facility and 18 and under players have priority to play. Also membership at Barnes is roughly twice as much as at PTC.
– PTC actually provides practice and warm up courts to Barnes Tennis Center during tournaments at Barnes, since they don’t have enough courts.
– Tennis is a growing sport and the membership of PTC has dramatically increased since 2020. PTC serves 1,500 members and non-members.
– PTC is not against pickleball, but against turning a successful non-profit tennis club into a for-profit pickleball facility without consideration of the people that enjoy playing tennis and call PTC their family!
– If Pickleball SD founders Stefan Boyland and Mike Shinzaki would put as much energy into building a pickleball facility as they do trying to take over PTC, they might already have a business. I’m not saying this is easy, but starting a business is not easy.
Pickleball is a fast growing fun activity that needs the attention of the city. There need to be facilities built to accommodate the many people who play the game, but not at the expense of tennis.


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