Officials, pickleball players break ground on new facility, first of its kind in Colorado
A crowd of about 150 attended the June 3 groundbreaking for the state’s first outdoor courts built specifically for the game of pickleball. Many brought their own shovels to help turn over the first dirt for this exciting project, afterwards enjoying refreshments despite the gusty afternoon wind. Guests also included Arvada Mayor Marc Williams as well as members of the Apex PRD Board of Directors and the Apex PRD Foundation.
The pickleball community displayed its usual energy, enthusiasm and sense of fun throughout the celebration. The project, set for completion in fall 2013, has been a grassroots effort led by “Pickleball Ken” Marquardt, an ambassador and devotee of the game. Ken helped build local player numbers to their current levels of nearly 1000. Realizing they were outgrowing the indoor courts at the Apex Center, the pickleballers threw their support behind Apex PRD’s effort to get funding for the new courts at the Apex Simms Street Center, 11706 W. 82nd Ave. In January 2013, the Jefferson County Open Space Advisory Committee designated $158,720 to build the courts, with additional funding provided by Apex PRD and the Apex PRD Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to the support of community recreation.
Meanwhile, pickleball enthusiasts continue to enjoy their sport at the Apex Center. For the uninitiated, it’s an easy-to-learn game that is played on a court, like tennis but half the size, with a Wiffle ball and paddles. It’s fast moving and fun for all ages and abilities!