February 27, 2019
The City of Johns Creek opened four new regulation size pickleball courts at Newtown Park to address community requests for facilities to accommodate area interest in the popular sport.
The pickleball project at Newtown Park allowed the city to convert two (of six) tennis courts into four pickleball courts. The project was initially born out of the Recreation and Parks Strategic Plan process and was presented to and approved by Johns Creek City Council as a part of 2019 budget.
“During the 2015 Recreation and Parks Strategic Plan process many residents expressed a desire for the city to have pickleball courts,” said Kirk Franz, Recreation Manager for the City of Johns Creek Recreation and Parks Department. “We have had many positive responses from existing and prospective pickleball players who are excited to hear that we were creating new regulation pickleball courts.”
According to USA Pickleball Association (USAPA), there are over 15,000 indoor and outdoor courts in the United States. The sport is catching on nationwide according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) 2018 Pickleball Participant Report, which reported pickleball currently has 3.1 million players in the US – an increase of 12 percent over the previous year.
Originally, temporary pickleball nets, paddles and balls were set up under the Mark Burkhalter Amphitheater for open play on a first come-first served basis. In June 2017, the city expanded hours of use for the two pickleball courts at the Burkhalter Amphitheater at Newtown Park due to increased demand from residents. Over time the city received numerous requests for more permanent pickleball courts and also for regulation size pickleball courts with a better playing surface.
The key objectives of the Johns Creek Recreation and Parks department is to provide quality recreational, educational and wellness programs for all residents and visitors. The city maintains a number of facilities, parks and natural open spaces to help accommodate the needs of all, both active and passive. For more information please visit www.johnscreekga.gov/recreationandparks