Unique partnership serves up opportunity for dedicated pickleball courts in downtown Plymouth

What’s happening: Plymouth is the latest Michigan community to carve out space for dedicated pickleball courts, a sport that is widely considered the fastest growing sport in the country. A unique partnership of community stakeholders is intent on making it happen come spring 2024.

What’s planned: Four brand new, dedicated pickleball courts will be built outside the Plymouth Arts & Recreation Complex (PARC) in downtown Plymouth. PARC has offered organizers the land free of charge, where four pickleball courts will accommodate free drop-in play, affordable and low-cost court reservations, lessons, and league play.

What’s needed: A group of local pickleball enthusiasts led by Pete Lamoureux have partnered with the nonprofit PARC on the project, which is expected to cost $150,000 to complete. Cash contributions from PARC and resident benefactors, as well as discounts from suppliers, have brought that number down to $100,000.

How they’ll get there: The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) has accepted the pickleball project into their Public Spaces Community Place placemaking initiative. Should organizers successfully crowdfund $50,000 by Sunday, Jan. 14, the MEDC will contribute an additional $50,000 by way of a matching grant.

The crowdfunding campaign is being hosted via the Michigan-based Patronicity platform, which is available online.

What they’re saying: “Pickleball is a unique, intergenerational sport that improves health and allows for inclusivity and a shared experience in a public space,” says MEDC Regional Prosperity Managing Director Paula Holtz. “We are pleased to support and provide resources for this project, which offers accessible, low-cost space for public recreation through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”

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MJ Galbraith is a writer and musician living in Detroit. Follow him on Twitter @mikegalbraith.