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Orem opens new pickleball courts at Sharon Park

By Genelle Pugmire daily Herald - | May 29, 2018
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Mindy Galanis, of Holladay, returns the ball as she plays a pickleball doubles match with Dani Barlow, of Nephi, against Bryan McGinnis, left, and Andrea Crespo, both of Orem, on Saturday, May 26, 2018, at Sharon Park's pickleball courts in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

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Michael Sheffield, a BYU graduate student and founder of the school's pickleball club, checks the net as he tightens it Saturday, May 26, 2018, at Sharon Park's pickleball courts in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

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Mindy Galanis, of Holladay, holds her paddle between points during a pickleball doubles match Saturday, May 26, 2018, at Sharon Park's pickleball courts in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

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Bryan McGinnis returns the ball during a pickleball doubles match Saturday, May 26, 2018, at Sharon Park's pickleball courts in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

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BYU student Zach Colemere returns the ball as he plays a pickleball doubles match Saturday, May 26, 2018, at Sharon Park's pickleball courts in Orem. Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

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Orem Mayor Richard Brunst, Miss Orem royalty, members of the City Council join in cutting the ribbon on the new pickleball courts. Six courts have been built has Sharon Park to accommodate resident requests.  Photo courtesy of Orem City.

After numerous requests over the past few years, Orem has constructed and opened six pickleball courts in Sharon Park, 600 N. 300 East.

The city held a special ribbon cutting with city dignitaries, Miss Orem royalty and Sharon Park area neighbors Thursday.

“We’ve had numerous requests over the past few years to construct pickleball courts somewhere in our parks,” said Steven Downs, city spokesman in a press release. “This was confirmed during the public outreach effort during the Parks Master Planning process which was completed about a year ago. There has been growing interest in the sport throughout the state.”

The pickleball complex brings new life into Sharon Park. The park was selected, according to the press release, because of its available open space and centralized location.

The project cost approximately $600,000. Orem used nearly $300,000 of Community Development Block Grant funding for courts.

“The City of Orem receives funding each year from the Department of Housing and Urban Development,” Downs said. “Each year the city tries to identify an area of the city that meets the HUD requirements and strives to makes a significant investment in that neighborhood.”

After multiple community meetings, the Sharon neighborhood agreed on some improvements to the walking path, additional lighting and safety measures in the park and pickleball courts, which is intended to service individuals of all ages.

“This project really showcases the good that the Community Development Block Grant can do in the community,” Downs said. “We are already looking forward to the next project.”

The courts were designed by city staff in consultation with several avid pickleball players and input from the surrounding neighborhood. The general contractor was J. Lyne Roberts & Sons, who prepped the site. Parkin Tennis Courts built the courts.

The courts are open at 7 a.m. and close at 10 p.m. There are six courts with lights, allowing play well into the evening. The lights are energy-efficient LED fixtures that are programmed to turn off at 10 p.m.

Parking for the courts is available on the north and south sides of the park.

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