Rec Board to seek pickleball court funds

By Sheryl Roadcap - [email protected]

SIDNEY — Pickleball courts may be established in Sidney if enough funds can be raised. The Sidney Recreation Board approved the pursuit of fundraising at its May 3 meeting.

Police Officer Jeremy Lorenzo provided a PowerPoint presentation for board members on pickleball, which Recreation Board minutes stated is the fastest growing sport in America.

His presentation also highlighted how to play pickleball, information about courts and the health benefit associated with the sport. Lorenzo currently has 137 signatures in favor of pickleball.

His report explained an average game takes 10 to 15 minutes to play. Each game plays to 11 points, with the win by at least two points. A player can only score when serving.

The size of one court is a 20 feet by 44 feet. The average cost for two courts is around $33,000 to build. Grants are available to help offset some of the cost. Currently, Sidney has inside courts at the YMCA and the Senior Center of Sidney and Shelby County.

After hearing the presentation, board members voted to pursue funding and establishing pickleball courts in Sidney.

The board also discussed the following:

• Story walk collaborative effort with Amos Memorial Public Library to help encourage children to read.

April Osborne, spoke to the board on behalf of the library about the possibility of constructing a walkable story with stands. It would be constructed with 18 aluminum posts, no more than 4 feet tall, with 40 feet between each post. The ideal location, she noted, would be along the Veterans Memorial Walkway in Tawawa Park by the Borne Learning Trail and Geib Pavilion.

The project would be 100% funded and maintained by the library. A QR code would be placed on the last post to track the use of the story walk and also could qualify readers for a prize at the library during their next visit.

The story would be changed bi-monthly to keep children returning to read. Also, between the stands, children would be given an activity to do before reading their next pages. An activity example would be to hop or skip to the next stand. This would give them exercise and well as a reading activity to do.

The board voted to support of construction of the Story Walk in Tawawa Park.

• Brinkley Pavilion update. Parks and Recreation Director Duane Gaier informed the board about a completed signed contract with Albert Binkley Dickas and the Community Foundation. The project, including the parking lot and pavilion, will be 100% privately funded by Dickas, for a total cost around $135,000. The completion date will be in the September/October timeframe.

The Aschenbach family heirs have been contacted about the pavilion being constructed, Gaier said. They are interested in possibly replacing the grove.

• Custenborder play structure. Gaier also informed the board the play structure between fields six and seven would be replaced in August. The structure is 20 years old and needs to be replaced, he said. The cost of the replacement play structure is $31,000. The total cost of the project will be $35,000, which includes concrete, gravel, etc.

In other business at the end of the meeting, Board member Mary Jannides asked for any pool repair updates. Gaier said the pipes have been lined, and lines were waiting to pressure tested.

Board member Todd Ratermann was absent from the meeting.

By Sheryl Roadcap

[email protected]

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.