Pickleball paddle and ball

Pickleball is traditionally played with two to four players who use a larger paddle than ping pong and hit a ball about the same size as a wiffle ball.

Interested in pickleball?

Those new to the game as well as enthusiasts have an opportunity to watch some of the best teams in the area at the Tri-City Pickleball Tournament, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28.

The tournament takes place at the Victoria Recreation Center, with additional games taking place at the Chanhassen Recreation Center and the Chaska Community Center.

There are three divisions: Men’s, women’s and mixed doubles and prizes will be given to winners of each category.

The primary location for the tournament will be the Victoria Recreation Center as it has the most indoor pickleball courts at six, said Holly Kaufhold, Victoria recreation supervisor.

The tournament is in its third year, according to Kaufhold and began with just Chanhassen and Chaska. Victoria was added last year.

“We just hosted another tournament here Jan. 12,” Kaufhold said, with Victoria, Chanhassen and Eden Prairie. “It was a really big tournament with the highest ranking men’s players in the playing in Victoria; Chanhassen hosted the women, and Eden Prairie hosted the co-ed teams. It was insane.”

“Pickleball has gotten to be huge,” Kaufhold said. “We offer it here (in the Victoria Recreation Center gym) every day of the week, seven days a week. Three pickleball courts can fit on one basketball court; we have two basketball courts. It’s one of the reasons people like to play here.”

Pickleball is popular and only getting more so, Kaufhold said. “It has blown up. It’s not going anywhere, anytime soon.”

Victoria Recreation Center offers free sessions for beginners once a month during winter; participants only have to preregister.

The next one offered in Victoria is from 10 a.m. to noon, Sunday, Jan. 27. It’s open to all ages; register on the city of Vic website at www.ci.victoria.mn.us/or call the Recreation Center at 952-443-4255.

Reporter

Unsie Zuege is an award-winning multimedia journalist, who enjoys community journalism, bibimbop, Netflix, Trivia Mafia and snuggling tiny dogs, not necessarily in that order.

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