If it weren’t for pickles, Christopher Columbus may never have “discovered” America. In his 1492 voyage, Columbus rationed pickles to keep his sailors from getting scurvy. They even grew cucumbers in Haiti during a rest in their journey to restock for the remainder of the voyage.
If it weren’t for Joel Pritchard’s discovery in the summer of 1965 on Bainbridge Island, Wash., the sport of pickleball may never have been discovered. He was hanging out with friends, they were bored and they attempted to set up a game of badminton. No one could find the shuttlecock, so they improvised by using a Wiffle ball, lowering the badminton net and fabricating paddles out of plywood from an old shed.
Pickleball’s popularity has exploded in Pagosa Country and throughout the United States. There are bushels of pickleball players who play three to four times a week on three courts in the Ross Aragon Community Center, four at South Pagosa Park and two uptown on the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association’s basketball court.
Everything was sweet for local pickleball fanatics until July. That’s when they requested that pickleball lines be permanently painted on the new flooring being installed at the Community Center.
Staff from the Community Center, the Pagosa Springs Parks and Recreation Department and the Building Maintenance Department was consulted before a recommendation was made to town council. Some of the concerns were: