As ARLnow was first to report last year, many neighbors of Arlington’s recently-established pickleball courts have come to vehemently oppose it, owing to the loud “pop” the ball makes when it hits a paddle. The percussive sound can be heard within nearby houses, at all hours of the day and — in the case of lighted courts — into the night.
That culminated last month in a campaign of dueling pro- and anti-pickleball flyers and posters distributed around Penrose and the Walter Reed Community Center, where the county is planning to build a sizable cluster of dedicated pickleball courts.
From ARLnow’s Feb. 13 story:
In a flyer that’s now being disseminated around the neighborhood, opponents are leveling accusations of “bullying of our children by pickleball players,” “public urination on playground and sensory garden,” and causing “excessive continuous noise from dawn to 10 p.m. every day.”
If more pickleball courts are added, it will even be more of a “public nuisance” the flyer says. It does not go into greater detail about the accusations.
“Arlington County is giving away our rights to Walter Reed Community Center (WRCC) to build a dedicated Pickleball Cluster,” it reads. “Current issues will get worse with conversion of 3 tennis to 9 pickleball courts.”
The fracas was noted a few days ago by Axios, which led to a lampooning last night on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. (See 0:52)
— The Late Show (@colbertlateshow) March 8, 2023
Arlington is not alone in stirring up a full-blown pickleball controversy.
In the Boston ‘burb of Wellesley, Mass., news crews descended last week as townsfolk near pickleball courts rattled their sabres against the infernal pop, a matter of civic concern for at least a few months. Pitched pickleball opposition over in Cape Cod prompted the hiring of noise-control consultants and a Wall Street Journal article last summer.
Pickleball players, of course, are inclined to defend their sport, which is rocketing in popularity as a recreational activity and attracting the attention of celebrities, pro athletes and large companies. There are hopes that pickleball paddles and balls will evolve and become quieter. But that’s not going to stop people from playing and there’s an argument to be made that the noise isn’t that bad all the way across the street from a court.
For the time being, though, it’s undeniable that outdoor pickleball can be loud and annoying to at least some neighbors. Which side of the proverbial net are you on?
Hat tip to Flood Czar
Good Friday evening, Arlington. Let’s take a look back at today’s stories and a look forward to tomorrow’s event calendar. 🕗 News recap The following articles were published earlier today…
A former ABC News producer whose Columbia Pike apartment was raided by the FBI last year has been sentenced. James Gordon Meek, 53, pleaded guilty in July to transportation and…
Metrorail service was suspended on the Blue and Yellow lines today after a train derailed.
4 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage 1/4 acre Jamestown Williamsburg Yorktown pyramid
At Generation Hope, we’re dedicated to supporting teen parents in college as they work toward earning their degrees. We are in need of caring child care volunteers for upcoming events on Saturday, October 21st (in Washington, DC), and Saturday, November 4th (in Arlington, VA). Join our growing volunteer community and support us at an event this fall!
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Join us for Arlington’s biggest civil rights & social justice event of the year. The banquet is back in person at the Arlington Campus of George Mason University.
Our keynote speaker this year is Symone Sanders from MSNBC and former Chief of Staff for Vice-President Kamala Harris.
The Master of Ceremonies is Joshua Cole, former state delegate, NAACP President, and local pastor.
Tickets/seating are limited. Purchase your ticket today! Sponsorship opportunities available.
Cody Chance and Dick Nathan of Long & Foster are hosting an online workshop on the topic of “down-sizing” Wednesday, October 4 from 5:30-7:00 p.m. Every great endeavor begins with a great plan. This workshop will give you the tools