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Fast-growing sport has a new home in Meridian park

Meridian city leaders and residents gathered on Tuesday for the ribbon cutting of new pickleball courts in Kleiner Memorial Park.

MERIDIAN, Idaho — Pickleball is America’s newest sport obsession. It’s growing in the Gem State, in terms of both participation and places to play the game.

The City of Meridian on Tuesday celebrated the ribbon-cutting for new pickleball courts at Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park.

“I think we are going to hear from the community especially in the spring when people get back outside about how wonderful addition this is to the community," Meridian Mayor Robert Simison said.

Pickleball is considered a combination of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong. It can be played indoors and outdoors. According to Pickleball magazine, the sport's boom started in 2010 with around 100,000 people playing. That number has grown to 3.5 million so far.

Simison said his goal is to continue to build community and hopes the court can bring people together.

“Pickleball is a growing sport in the country. I think it is for all ages. I think it's taken hold in the senior community, but everyone loves to play pickleball,” he said. “It's a great opportunity to move about and get that exercise,” said Simison.

Simison said the city helped with landscaping after construction was complete. He said the city is working to get more courts built in other parks around Meridian, but doesn't have a timeline right now.

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