DIDSBURY-OLDS -Several communities in Mountain View County have drop-in pickleball at schools and recreation centres throughout the year. Those events are usually fairly laid-back with people coming out for fun and socialization as well as some exercise.
For the more competitive types, there are a number of tournaments throughout the province, mostly in bigger centres like Calgary and Red Deer. Last year for the first time a couple of pickleball enthusiasts organized a tournament for the Mountain View region.
After a successful inaugural year, the Mountain View Pickleball Shootout returned on Jan. 5, once again at the Olds High School-Olds College facility, the Ralph Klein Centre in Olds.
The shootout saw 44 pickleball players from all around Central Alberta compete in a “kings/queens court” ladder format.
Didsbury’s Dwayne Archer, who organized the event once again along with Mark Leggette, said the tournament went well and featured some strong competition.
“Overall it went very well,” said Archer. “We had lots of positive feedback. We had room for 44 players in our format and filled it. We even had a few spare players on site and a waiting list. We had participants come from as far away as Hannah, Red Deer, Sundre and Airdrie.”
Archer said the ladder format allowed players to play with different players throughout the day.
“In our format you played as an individual, keeping track of personal results yet always playing with a different partner each game,” he said. “Players have pickleball rankings from 2.0 to 4.5 but within a short time you’ll find yourself playing just people ranked the same as yourself.”
The winner at the end of the day was Ken Wu from Red Deer.
“A big thank you to Steven Bowie and Olds College for the great facility they made available to the community,” he said.