Pickleball Popularity Increasing in the Northland

The sport has only been around Duluth for a few years, but fans are flocking to learn how to play it.

DULUTH, Minn. – Have you ever wondered what the midway point is between ping pong and tennis? Well that would be pickleball.

“It’s fun. It’s a good exercise. You don’t realize you’re getting a good workout. New ownership took over and we wanted to incorporate not just tennis, but more indoor sports for Duluth,” DISC manager Joe Jurich said.

“A friend of mine who was actually instrumental in starting the sport in the Duluth area invited me to the Duluth Y one day to try it out. And after a couple of games, I was hooked,” said Duluth Area Pickleball Association board member Michael Rengel.

The sport itself was invented back in 1965. But in the past year, it has become very popular in the Northland, especially amongst the retirement community.

“In places like California, Florida and Arizona, people are fanatics for the sport. It’s kind of replaced a lot of tennis,” Rengel said.

The Duluth Area Pickleball Association says there are close to 2000 pickleballers across the entire Northland and they hope to one day have courts specifically designed to play the sport they love. For more information on how you can start playing pickleball, head to the Duluth Indoor Sports Center website or contact the Duluth Area Pickleball Association.

Categories: Community, Sports