HELENA — On Mother’s Day weekend you’ll find the Helena Picklers playing on the courts at Barney Park in the Capital City. The local pickleball group is gearing up for its weekend fundraiser where it is looking to expand.
"We’re trying to get dedicated courts, that’s our goal, but we really want people to come and just enjoy the game of pickleball,” Helena pickleball ambassador Carl Schweitzer said.
This will be a free event to the public to enjoy some fun in the sun as well as refreshments. Participants are encouraged to bring a paddle and protective eyewear. The barbeque fundraiser will solicit funds to build new dedicated pickleball courts in the space at Ryan Fields. “We picked Ryan Park because it’s away from any sort of residential areas,” stated Schweitzer.
Board member Alex Tommerup aids in the implementation towards the end goal: The conceptual pickleball master plan.
Schweitzer and Tommerup emphasized how the game is easy to learn, fun to play, and can keep you active. “(I'm) having more fun than I can stand, it’s a great sport, you can be a pro at it, or you can play as soft as you want,” explained Tommerup.
The Picklers also play at East Helena High School, the Civic Center and have indoor courts through the Salvation Army, YMCA and Capital City Health Club.
“We’re such an expanding group that we also play (in) East Helena as soon as school's done. We can play there anytime,” says Schweitzer.
They are hopeful that the weekend festivities will help increase the love for pickleball in Helena. “Come out on Saturday and just learn a little bit about the sport, meet some of the people, and we would love to have you,” added Tommerup.