Your Local News | Allentown, Bethlehem & Easton
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Easton News

Paddles up: Palmer Township opens pristine new pickleball courts

Palmer Township pickleball courts
Jim Deegan
Palmer Township turned two tennis courts at Fairview Park into six pickleball courts that opened Monday, June 3, 2024. The project cost about $280,000 and nearly doubles the number of township-maintained courts available in Palmer, an official said.

PALMER TWP, Pa. — It was 6 o’clock on a gorgeous June evening and new pickleball courts at Fairview Park stood empty.

That’s about to change.

With little hype or fanfare, Palmer Township this week opened its newest recreational offering — six pickleball courts in the park at Fairview Avenue and Mine Lane Road.

The $280,000 project was more than seven months in the making and nearly doubles the number of courts maintained by the township, Director of Parks and Recreation Dan McKinney said.

A work crew finished the job Monday at the park’s old tennis courts; Tuesday was the first full day the pickleball courts were available.

The beautiful thing about pickleball is it’s for everyone,” McKinney said. “We get all ages — senior citizens, younger people.

"It’s an easier sport to play than tennis. It doesn’t beat up the body as much. We have men and women of all ages that play.”

"The beautiful thing about pickleball is it’s for everyone. We get all ages."
Dan McKinney, Palmer Township's director of parks and recreation

Township supervisors approved spending the money and converting two of Fairview Park’s three tennis courts. The courts just west of the park's basketball courts now have six pickleball courts and a tennis court.

The surface, striping, nets and fencing all are brand new.

'Anybody can go'

McKinney said "it started with a group of citizens coming to a Palmer Township Recreation Committee meeting and making a suggestion — could some of the tennis courts be refurbished for pickleball courts?”

“With the increase in popularity, supervisors decided it was a good idea and said they wanted to provide a better facility for a more diverse population.”

Palmer Township pickleball rules
Jim Deegan
A sign posted at Fairview Park in Palmer Township with rules for the pickleball courts. The township turned two tennis courts at the park into six pickleball courts that opened Monday, June 3, 2024.

The township’s first pickleball courts opened years ago at the Chrin Community Center when officials placed lines for two courts on an indoor basketball court, McKinney said.

That led to construction of five courts at Mill Race Park along the Bushkill Creek off Newlins Mill Road.

The addition of courts at Fairview Park brings to 13 the number of courts maintained by the township — but even that is likely to be in high demand given the game’s popularity, McKinney said.

The new courts at Fairview Park are lighted and free and open to the public daily until 10 p.m., McKinney said.

They’re available on a first-come basis and no reservations are required. Players are asked to limit their total court time to one hour when others are waiting, according to the rules.

“Anybody can go. We have some rules posted,” McKinney said

He said the township plans to mark the opening with a pickleball tournament on Saturday and Sunday, July 6-7. Different divisions will compete and the cost is $30 per person.

“That will be the first official event,” he said.

More information and registration for the tournament can be found on the Chrin Community Center website.