Stop the hysteria

Resident questions the politicians over pickleball and says there are other priority issues

Someone asked me what pickleball means to me. Why am I writing letters to the editor about it?

I thought about it and stated that, “I found it appalling that such a new sport, for people with degenerative joints and discs, has been denied access to the elderly and less competitive people in a manner so as to make the sport disappear.”

In The Morning Star article Jan. 10, front page no less, the paper is reporting that there is going to be a problem with funding for the new sport.

The Greater Vernon Advisory Committee has dedicated $13 to 20 million (cost overruns by the time it is completed) for a new arena. It is also dedicating $8 million to maintain a decrepit, crumbling old arena, while the new one is being constructed.

GVAC is just getting out of earshot about the cost overruns and the possible wasting of money on the track and field venue built at the Okanagan College campus.

The article states that the pickleball courts and adjoining tennis courts will cost about $2 million. Really? What kind of facility are they building?

Pickleball only hit Vernon recently, to my knowledge. Are there that many willing to play?

Clearly the directors of the GVAC think so.

Director Mike Macnabb wants to use the American model of sports and have the pickleball club become private and fund their own arena for their sport.

If this is the true way to do this, then minor hockey should be building their own arena, the lawn bowling club should be paying up for the use of Polson Park, and any public tennis courts are now to be used by private clubs only at a cost of $2,000 per year per player to use the tennis courts in the city.

Instead of looking at existing facilities that can be used while a head count analysis of who is really using what, GVAC wants the public to either pay up or sit on the couch.

We have hospital issues that should be discussed, lack of walk-in clinics and doctors; but we have to spend front page news on pickleball, and how the seniors who mostly play the sport are unable to form a private club because most of them are on a fixed income.

The news about pickleball was started by someone in charge of NIMBY, and noise levels in a park that is rarely used.

Let’s talk about adult stuff like water use, water quality, lake pollution and save the hysteria about pickleball for an appropriate time after some quality time is spent doing research.

My thoughts, not yours.

Greg Hesford

Vernon