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Posted on: October 13, 2020

Parks & Recreation adds pickleball at Victoria Community Center Park

Pickleball players stand at a distance from each other on a pickleball court.

PHOTO #1: Some of the volunteers who worked to convert the new pickleball courts at the Victoria Community Center Park, from left, are Nazmije Neziri, Jan Wendt, Katie Merriman, Dewayne Merriman, Wayne Pozzi, Danna Garland, David Peters, Buddy Breivogel and Dottie Edison.

Man poses on a pickleball court with a pickleball racketPHOTO #2: Wayne Pozzi, ambassador to the USA Pickleball Association for the Victoria area.

PHOTO #3: Jan Wendt plays pickleball Oct. 9 at the Victoria Community Center Park. 

PHOTO #4: Nazmije Neziri plays pickleball Oct. 9 at the Victoria Community Center Park.

A woman playing pickleball reaches to hit the ball.PHOTO #5: From left, Wayne Pozzi and Jan Wendt play pickleball Oct. 9 at the Victoria Community Center Park.

PHOTO #6: From left, David Peters and Buddy Breivogel play pickleball Oct. 9 at the Victoria Community Center Park.

The City of Victoria Parks & Recreation collaborated with a group of local pickleball enthusiasts to convert half of the tennis courts at the Victoria Community Center to pickleball courts.

Pickleball is similar to tennis, but it is played on a smaller court. The project converted two of the facility’s tennis courts into six pickleball courts. The first four pickleball courts were completed early this summer, and the final two were completed last week.

Woman playing pickleball hits the ball.“Pickleball is an increasingly popular sport, and residents had been asking us about the possibility of adding pickleball courts,” said Recreation Services Manager Jaymie Heibel. “Converting the existing tennis courts was relatively cheap, and it allows residents to get a different type of use out of the facility.”

Wayne Pozzi, ambassador to the USA Pickleball Association for the Victoria area, reached out to Parks & Recreation about converting the courts when he learned that the tennis courts were being resurfaced. Parks & Recreation provided nets and materials for the project, and Pozzi’s local pickleball group volunteered to repaint the courts.

Man watches woman who is about to hit the ball during a game of pickleball.“This is a first-class pickleball facility,” said Pozzi, who plays pickleball competitively in other cities. “Hundreds of cities our size would love to have courts like this.”

Two men stand on one side of the court during a game of pickleball.To celebrate the completion of the pickleball courts, Pozzi will host an informal open house at 9 a.m. Oct. 17 at the courts. The open house will allow attendees of all ages and skill levels to meet one another and learn more about playing pickleball.

Pozzi is reminding attendees to follow CDC recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19, including social distancing and using hand sanitizer. Attendees will be required to wear facial coverings when not playing.

For more information about Parks & Recreation facilities, call 361-485-3200.

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