He told the rest of the board last week that he’s played in Plymouth, Monticello, and Lafayette, and Winamac has the nicest courts in the area. “I’ve told these people about what we’ve got. I’m telling you, there’s going to be a lot of people coming to our park to not only play pickleball, but I’m sure they’ll end up at One Eyed Jack’s or Cruizers or somewhere, as well,” Chapman said. “And they’re really excited about coming here because that sport’s growing. Monticello’s got three indoor courts. They’re getting rid of their indoor tennis courts and making six more pickleball courts because it’s just growing.”
Chapman said pickleball players would be interested in holding tournaments at Winamac’s courts, but the fact that the town only has two of them would limit the number of teams that could take part. “If we had four courts, you could have quite a few people come to town, spend half a day, enjoy the park and play, and not make it a major hassle for anybody,” he said. “So a couple more courts, we’d be well on our way. I don’t think we should go overboard, but I can tell you the four courts would be used just by our local players, not to mention being able to do those other things.” Chapman raised the possibility of placing two more pickleball courts where the remaining tennis court is now.
He also discussed the addition of spectator seating. “The suggestion was made that since we have such a long end-line on the pickleball court, if we would maybe buy some three-foot fence, so the ball doesn’t travel as far on each end,” he explained. “And then between that three-foot fence and the large fence, if we just had a three-bleacher-high seating, so people that are watching can sit while they’re waiting to play and socialize.”
Chapman was confident that pickleball players would be willing to donate money toward at least some of the proposed improvements. No formal decisions were made last week, but park board members will consider those ideas when coming up with a wish list of future projects.