Pickleball complex requests $400K donation from Charlotte County


A possible tourism venture could provide entertainment for residents and visitors in Southwest Florida.

PicklePlex of Punta Gorda Inc. is proposing using tax dollars to build a complex used to hold pickleball tournaments. They are also asking Charlotte County to fund a one-time donation of $400,000 for initial construction.

Pickleball instructor Peter Reilly said the sport is increasing in popularity for younger and older residents alike.

“Not only does older citizens like myself like to play the younger generation from junior high and younger are getting into the game,” Reilly said.

The non profit organization is working to raise nearly $250,000 to build the complex that would feature 40 indoor and outdoor courts, a restuaunt and proshop on Florida SouthWestern State College’s campus.

“No matter where you are, whether you put in two courts or 200 courts, there’s going to be someone that’s going to want to play there,” Reilly said.

The complex would be free and open to the public.

Pickleball President Ted Kegris said they’d be able to pay back the county quickly by holding multi-day tournaments. One is scheduled for later this year.

“We’re going to bring 500 players, plus the spectators that see those tournaments,” Kegris said.

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