Hey, parents: If the Valley’s rising temps and absence of a school routine has made your kids fickle to getting some exercise,
no need to worry: Pickleball is here. It’s a tasty pastime, but don’t confuse it with the common deli treat of a similar name.
The uniquely named sport combines the skills of badminton, tennis, table-tennis and raquetball, played with a hard paddle and a waffleball.
Fans say it’s an easy game, taking about 15 minutes to learn. And, surprisingly to some, Pickleball is reported to be the fastest growing
sport in the USA. Though played mostly by older folks, it’s gaining ground with the younger set, as explained by Dutch Vander Laan, area ambassador
of the USA Pickleball Association. This year, Pickleball Summer Camp was held at Pecos Community Center as part of a program to engage nearly 200 kids
of all ages in the interactive game. Instructors from the center assumed roles as summer camp staff, alongside adult volunteers from the Tempe Pickleball Club.
Information: Pecos Community Center, 17010 S. 48th St. — 602-534-5252.
Photos by Billy Hardiman