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Crossville, Tennessee: With Apologies to Billie Jean King!

“Tennis [and pickleball] can be defined as violent action taking place in an atmosphere of total tranquility.”  —Billie Jean King 

Because golf courses are large, and because Fairfield Glade has five of them, there is a lot of conversation about the links in and around our community. As a result, the world-class Fairfield Glade Racquet Center doesn’t get as much time in the spotlight as it deserves. We’re here today to do something about that.

We extend our apologies to tennis legend Billie Jean King for the addition of “and pickleball” to her quote above. Truth be told, at this point in her life, King may have added this popular new sport to her game repertoire as well.

The Fairfield Glade Racquet Center

King’s quote says everything about the passion our players bring to racquet sports contrasting with the peaceful atmosphere in which they’re played here at Fairfield Glade. And for those of you drawn to the lines and nets of tennis and pickleball, you already know what a beautifully equipped facility the center is. For everyone else, here is what you should know about the Fairfield Glade Racquet Center:

It’s located across the street from The Square. The center has four outdoor clay tennis courts, four indoor tennis courts and eight outdoor pickleball courts. Our Racquet Center is the only public facility between Knoxville and Nashville with indoor courts. Inside is a pro shop and viewing area for the indoor courts. Here you’ll find everything you need to engage in these two great games for fun and fitness.

Getting Started in Tennis or Pickleball

For new players, the center offers five-week pickleball and tennis apprentice classes for just $50. And that includes a racquet or paddle. You’ll absorb the vernacular, rules, the moves and even the culture. You’ll learn to dink and drive and how to avoid foot faults and falafels.  

The pickleball apprentice class starts in March, and you can sign up now at the center. The tennis apprentice class will begin in May.

Getting Better in Your Game

The Racquet Center has two USPTA certified instructors; William Taylor, director of racquet sports, and Dylan Nelson, assistant racquet sports professional. They offer both private and group lessons in tennis and pickleball.  

There are also clinics throughout the week. (Pickleball clinics are held April through October.)

Looking to Play?

If you’re new to the area and wanting to play, there are opportunities throughout the week for players to just drop in and play either tennis or pickleball without making a reservation. It’s a great way to meet new players. Stop by the Racquet Center and check the times for tennis and pickleball drop-ins.

For any additional information on racquet sports or to sign-up for any of the activities offered, stop on by, call 484-3758 or email We can’t wait to get you on the court.

One Last Thing … The Name Pickleball

You’ve read all the way to the end, and you’re still curious about the name pickleball, aren’t you? Well, here’s how the story goes regarding the origin of the game and its name. 

Pickleball was invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, a short ferry ride from Seattle, WA. Three men, Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell and Barney McCallum — whose children were bored with their usual summertime activities — made up the rules, collected the equipment and turned it all over to their kids. Before long the adults were playing, and the rest is history as they say.

The Pritchards had a cocker spaniel named Pickles. Whenever a ball would come his way, he’d grab it in his mouth and go hide it in the bushes. You might say it became Pickles’ ball. 

According to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association’s 2017 Pickleball Participant Report, pickleball had 2.815 million players in the U.S. alone.

Whether you choose a racquet or a paddle, we’d love to see you at the Racquet Center. It’s a great source of fun. Just keep an eye out for pickles.

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FGCC Board of Directors and Senior Management Team (SMT)

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