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Three easy things to do today to ask Bellevue Parks for more pickleball courts

  1. Go to the Bellevue Parks and Open Spaces Suggestion Box.
    Give some love to all the pickleball suggestions already posted.
    Add your own.
  2. Go to the Bellevue Parks an Open Spaces Survey, and ask for lighted, covered, dedicated pickleball courts, clustered in groups of 8 or more.
    Or whatever else you would like to see.
  3. Tell all your pickleball friends to do the same.

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Action Alert: Shape the future of the Bellevue Parks System

Do you dream of Bellevue having many sets of 6 or 12 dedicated outdoor pickleball courts in its parks system?

During a virtual Neighborhood Leadership Gathering on Thursday, Oct. 7 from 6:30 to 8:00pm, Bellevue Parks and Community Services staff will share the scope of the department’s many assets and services and the purpose of a master plan. You will have opportunities during the evening to share your priorities and dreams for the future of the Bellevue parks system.

RSVP Todayneighborhoodoutreach@bellevuewa.gov

More information: https://bellevuewa.gov/city-government/departments/community-development/neighborhoods/classes-and-events/neighborhood-leadership-gathering

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Alert

ACTION ALERT: Last Push for 10 DEDICATED Pickleball Courts in Mercer Island

We have done a great job making ourselves heard so far in the Mercer Island “Parks and Open Space Plan” update process.

Whether we will get new shared tennis/pickleball courts or DEDICATED pickleball courts depends on how much support for DEDICATED pickleball courts we will show at the upcoming Virtual Open House next Tuesday, September 28 at 5:30pm.

Please register today to attend this community meeting on Tuesday.

Thank you!

Pass it on.

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Alert

Action Alert: Ask for Pickleball Courts in King County Parks

Would you like pickleball courts at Marymoor Park in Redmond, or at Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center? Now is the time to ask.

King County is updating its Open Space Plan. This plan will define what park projects King County will undertake in the next 6 years.

They are starting with a customer satisfaction survey. One of the questions is “What are the top 3 things that would most encourage you to use or continue using King County Parks’ parks, trails, and natural areas in the future?” Please answer that you would like “pickleball courts at Marymoor Park, Steve Cox Memorial Park, and at all King County playfields.”

Don’t delay. The survey closes Sunday, September 26.

And please encourage other pickleball players to complete this survey as well.

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Alert

Ask for More Pickleball Courts in Bellevue

What

Bellevue is starting to update their Parks and Open Space System plan. This plan will set the Parks Department long-term objectives for acquisition, preservation or development of parks, community facilities, trails and open space in Bellevue. To get significantly more outdoor courts, we need it to be included in this plan.

To make your voice heard, you have two main options: Make your case in person during a public hearing on September 14, or write an email that will be entered in the same meeting’s record.

How

In person

The Bellevue Parks & Community Services Board will hold a public hearing during its meeting at 6:00 PM on Tuesday, September 14, 2021. To be added to the speaker list at the public hearing, please sign-up by 3:00 p.m. on September 14, 2021. Click the following link to sign-up: https://bellevuewa.gov/city-government/departments/city-clerks-office/public-meetings-speaker-registration/parks-community. If you choose this option, practice your speech and make sure you can be done in three minutes or less.

By Email

You may also email parkboard@bellevuewa.gov with the subject line “Written Communications – September 14 Public Hearing.”

By Snail Mail

Send your letter to:
 Bellevue Parks & Community Services
Attn: Ryan Walker
P.O. Box 90012
Bellevue, WA 98009-9012

What Should We Ask?

The Parks and Open Space System Plan is a 20-year plan. If pickleball keeps growing at its present rate, there will be over 10 times as many pickleball players in 20 years. Tell the Parks Department what it needs to do to prepare for this.

Make it personal. If pickleball has changed your life in any significant way, please mention it.

Will This Be Enough?

It will be necessary to show that there is a strong demand for more pickleball courts at this Parks Board hearing. We will need to keep showing the same enthusiasm throughout the entire development process of the new Parks and Open Space System Plan.

More Information

Here is the public hearing announcement, with many more details.

Public hearing to update Parks and Open Space System Plan

If you live, work, or play in Bellevue then we would like to hear from you.  Bellevue Parks and Community Services is updating the city’s Parks and Open Space System Plan, which is the primary tool used to guide the long-term growth and development of Bellevue’s parks, trails, and open space system.  Your feedback is critical to creating a successful plan and helps us understand needs and interests of the community.

You are invited to attend the next meeting of the Bellevue Parks & Community Services Board.  The Board will hold a public hearing during its meeting at 6:00 PM on Tuesday, September 14, 2021.  The public hearing will be held virtually via Zoom webinar.  Connection information is published on the meeting agenda, available here.

The hearing is an opportunity for City of Bellevue residents and other stakeholders to provide input regarding long-term objectives for acquisition, preservation or development of parks, community facilities, trails and open space in Bellevue.  Your feedback will inform a set of 20-year capital project recommendations, which are reviewed and updated approximately every six years through this plan. 

Comments can be provided in-person at the public hearing or submitted in writing before the public hearing.  To be added to the speaker list at the public hearing, please sign-up by 3:00 p.m. on September 14, 2021. Click the following link to sign-up: https://bellevuewa.gov/city-government/departments/city-clerks-office/public-meetings-speaker-registration/parks-community.  You may also email parkboard@bellevuewa.gov with the subject line “Written Communications – September 14 Public Hearing.” or by mail to Bellevue Parks & Community Services, Attn: Ryan Walker, P.O. Box 90012, Bellevue, WA 98009-9012.  All written comments received prior to 3 p.m. on September 14, 2021 will be read or summarized into the record at the meeting.  For alternate formats, interpreters (voice or sign language), or reasonable accommodation requests, please phone 425-452-4162 (voice) or email parkboard@bellevuewa.gov at least 48 hours in advance.

Information on the Parks and Open Space System Plan can be found at the following website:  www.bellevuewa.gov/park-plan.htm.  Additional opportunities to engage with this planning effort will be posted at this website as available, including a forthcoming survey in which Bellevue park users are invited to answer questions about how they use parks and what types of parks they would like to see in the future. 

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Alert

Seattle Parks and Recreation wants to hear from you!

What would you like to see in parks, open spaces, & community centers in the coming years?

Seattle Parks asks you to help it plan for pandemic & economic recovery, responding to climate change, and supporting racial equity, by participating in their online open house: https://sprstrategicplan.infocommunity.org/

What does this have to do with pickleball?

They will ask you: Did you or your family use Seattle Parks and Recreation programs and spaces during the pandemic? If so, how did you participate?
Make sure you answer something like the following if it rings true to you:
[X] Other:
I played pickleball on outdoor pickleball courts [x] times a week

They will ask you: Have you experienced barriers when trying to participate in Seattle Parks and Recreation programs?
Make sure you answer something like the following if it rings true to you :
[X] Other:
(1) Indoor pickleball facilities are often overcrowded.
(2) Many outdoor pickleball courts still don’t have pickleball nets.
(3) Why are tennis players allowed to reserve pickleball courts when there are plenty of tennis-only courts available exclusively for them?

They will ask you: What are you or your family most excited about as we move toward reopening our facilities and community spaces? 
Make sure you answer something like the following if it rings true to you :
[X] Other:
Indoor and outdoor pickleball

They will ask you: What types of programming would best support you as Seattle continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic? 
Make sure you answer something like the following if it rings true to you :
[X] Other:
Intro to pickleball classes
Rec’n The Streets pickleball
Drop-in indoor and outdoor pickleball

They will ask you: SPR is interested in improving our feedback loop with communities we serve. How can we better reach you?
Make sure you answer something like the following if it rings true to you :
[X] Other:
The feedback loop is broken. Pickleball players have submitted almost 50 pages of feedback to the Strategic Plan (https://seattlemetropickleball.com/wp-content/pdfs2share/SPR%202020%20Strategic%20Plan%20-%20Citizen%20Feedback%20-%20Pickleball.pdf). How do we know you are listening?

What else do I need to do?

Make sure you click the “Submit” button at the bottom of the survey.

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Alert News

Your Chance to Chat with the Seattle Parks District Oversight Committee and Seattle Board of Park Commissioners

What

Seattle Parks hosts Big Day of Play as a celebration of Seattle’s diversity and it encourages neighbors, communities and families to have fun, build relationships and be active together. It’s the day to play your way! We see this as the perfect day to advocate for pickleball. Read on.

When

This year, the Big Day of Play is taking place Saturday August 21 from noon to 4pm. You don’t have to be there all four hours; gather a group of pickleball friends and drop by when convenient.

Where

The event takes place outdoors at Rainier Playfield, across the street from the Rainier Community Center.

Be sure to look at the four tennis courts located on the playfield, across the street from the Community Center. These courts see very little use throughout the year, yet the Seattle Parks Department refuses to paint pickleball court lines on them. The Rainier Community Center has 6 indoor pickleball courts and historically enjoyed a large, active, and diverse community of pickleball players. Wouldn’t it make sense to paint pickleball court lines on the outdoor tennis courts right across the street from the community center?

Why

This is your chance to talk to the Seattle Parks District Oversight Committee and the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners. These two groups have some oversight of the Parks Department. Several of their members will be present at the Big Day of Play. They will be asking attendees the following questions:
– What is the Seattle Parks Department doing well and should keep doing?
(A: Host a large and diverse pickleball community at the Rainier Community Center. Reach new players through their Rec’n The Streets program.)
– What is the Seattle Parks Department doing poorly and should stop doing?
(A: Seattle Parks only allows pickleball on the least desirable tennis courts. This is redlining and it is time to stop that practice. In particular, stop vetoing painting pickleball court lines on the Rainier Playfield tennis courts.)
– What is the Seattle Parks Department not doing yet that it should start doing?
(A: Allocate court use equitably across tennis and pickleball.)

Tell them to start painting pickleball court lines on the Rainier Playfield tennis courts. The Parks department has already painted, is about to paint or has already recommended painting pickleball lines on most outdoor tennis courts adjacent to community centers in other parts of the city. There is no reason to make an exception with Rainier. And no, this is not a highly used tennis court. Their own data shows that these courts are reserved an average of only 45 minutes a day.

Tell them that the Parks department insists on painting pickleball lines only on the least desirable tennis courts. This is discrimination plain and simple, and has to stop.

Tell them to allocate money to fund pickleball recreation programming and pickleball facilities in their next budget. They are about to allocate a boatload of money to the Parks Department for the next six years. In their first budget cycle, they allocated:
$26,681,070 for Parks and Recreation Operating Expenses, supplementing and expanding the capacity of Seattle Parks and Recreation to serve Seattle residents.
$142,927,236 for Capital Projects, investing in infrastructure and improvement projects for Seattle Parks and Recreation to preserve and maintain Seattle’s park system.
And all that is just a small part of the Parks Department’s total budget.

In their last budget they allocated over to $2,000,000 to tennis for Amy Yee Tennis Center upgrades and for drainage improvements at the Laurelhurst Playfield outdoor tennis courts. In that same budget, they allocated $0 to pickleball recreation programming and $0 to pickleball facilities.

Tell them that it is not acceptable to fund tennis and leave pickleball unfunded.

In Summary

  • Come to Rainier Playfield on Saturday August 21 anytime between noon and 4pm.
  • Find the Seattle Parks District Oversight Committee members and the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners. They will likely sport name tags that will make it easy to identify them. Other pickleball players will help you in your search.
  • Tell them to paint pickleball court lines on the Rainier Playfield tennis courts.
  • Tell them that the Parks Department practice of painting pickleball lines only on the least desirable tennis courts is discrimination that must end.
  • Tell them to allocate money to fund pickleball recreation and facilities in their next budget. And it is no longer acceptable to fund tennis and leave pickleball unfunded.
  • Make it personal: Tell them how pickleball has affected your life.
  • Grab a group of friends to come with you if you can. If not, don’t worry: you will recognize others from the pickleball community when you get there.

Please tell all your pickleball friends.

See you there!

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Alert

Tell Kirkland Parks: “More Pickleball Please”

The Kirkland Parks Department will be visiting Kirkland Parks to collect your parks and recreation stories in July and August. Look for a large blue human-sized butterfly. Tell it you would like to see more outdoor and indoor pickleball facilities in Kirkland.

Here is where you can find it next:

July 29 – 2 PM to 4 PM Lee Johnson FieldSprinkler Park
July 31 – 1 PM to 3 PM Marina Park SummerFest (KidZone)  
August 3 – 11 AM to 12 PM Juanita Beach Park Kids Concert (After)  
August 6 – 6 PM to 8 PM Lee Johnson Field Cornhole Tournament
August 7 – 11 AM to 1 PM Downtown Kirkland Kirkland Car Show
August 13 – 1 PM to 3 PM Totem Lake Park
August 18 – 3 PM to 5 PM Marina Park Wednesday Market

It is important that the Parks department hear from pickleball players at these events.

Please tell your friends.

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Alert

Heads up, Bellevue!

Get ready to ask for more pickleball facilities

The city of Bellevue is starting to update its Parks and Open Space System Plan (POSSP). This is a 20-year plan that gets updated every six years.

Over the next couple of months the Bellevue Parks Department will be asking for you to submit feedback about what you would like to see in the new plan.  There will be a web survey.  A public hearing will also occur, most likely in September. 

Wouldn’t it be nice if the new plan included developing more indoor and outdoor pickleball facilities in Bellevue? For this to happen, we will have to ask for it, loudly and often.

What will you ask for?

Start thinking about what you would like to ask the Bellevue Parks Department to do for pickleball in the short (2 years), medium (5 years) and long (10 years) term. Discuss it with other players.

Here are some things to think about to get you started:

  • Would you like outdoor courts that are lighted, so you can play in the evening in the fall, winter and spring?
  • Would you prefer a central pickleball facility with a large number of courts, or would you rather see the same number of courts spread out in different locations throughout the city?
  • Would you like to see public outdoor tennis courts to be lined for pickleball, as a first cheap step to accommodate the growing number of pickleball players.
  • If current trends persist, the number of pickleball players is expected to double every 5 years for a while. What should the Bellevue Parks department do to be prepared for this growth?
  • Would you like to have access to more indoor pickleball time, or are you happy with the current or pre-pandemic offerings at the South Bellevue, North Bellevue and Crossroads Community Center?

For those who want to know everything

If you want to learn more about the POSSP update process, here are some slides shared by the Parks Department.

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Alert

ASK FOR MORE INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PICKLEBALL IN EDMONDS

  1. Fill in this survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/87WJ69W
  2. Participate in the Thursday July 22 community meeting. During this meeting, thank the city for continuously improving the current outdoor courts, and for accommodating larger and larger numbers of players indoor. Then ask for more of the same: more indoor and outdoor pickleball. Add whatever else you would like to see, like semi-permanent pickleball nets perhaps.