The Hot Springs Village Pickleball Club was formed in 2013. The club currently has over 300 members participating in open play, leagues, tournaments and other organized activities.
Games are played at the DeSoto Recreation Area courts located on Desoto Boulevard approximately one mile from the West Gate. The facility consists of fourteen (14) outdoor regulation pickleball courts. LED lighting on the 7 South Courts for nighttime use. A Clubhouse with water and bathroom facilities are part of the complex.
The Club was organized to:
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In 2006, Hot Springs Village resident Dee Vincent thought that pickleball would be a great sport to add to those already offered in the Village. She first played pickleball in Happy Trails, Arizona, and loved the fast-paced, aerobic game that is played on a badminton-sized court. Being less strenuous than tennis and taking less time than a game of golf, pickleball would be a perfect outdoor game for a community with more older residents.
Dee approached the POA’s Recreation Committee in May 2006 about converting a tennis court to several pickleball courts, the committee members said they needed proof of enough interest in the game to warrant the expense. Dee then scheduled several open demonstrations and 108 Villagers showed up for a lesson. Soon after, the POA painted a pickleball court in the center of each of the Village’s three original tennis courts. In 2007, the POA formally converted one of the tennis courts to four pickleball courts. In 2011, the POA converted another tennis court to pickleball, making a total of 8 regulation courts at the Family Recreation Area on DeSoto Blvd.
In addition to being the founder of HSV Pickleball, Dee also served as ambassador for the U.S.A. Pickleball Association. Her role was to promote pickleball clubs in surrounding areas.
In September 2006, Hot Springs Village Pickleball sent its first participants to the Arkansas Senior Olympics, which was held in Hot Springs. Twelve Village pickleball players earned ribbons during the event that attracted athletes from Arkansas and surrounding states.
By 2008, pickleball had become a well-known sport in the Village. Pickleball players were enjoying monthly tournaments as well as welcoming visitors from other states who wanted to learn about the sport during their stay in the Village. Only three years after HSV Pickleball was formed, members hosted the 2009 Arkansas Senior Olympics Pickleball tournament. Participants came from Tennessee, Louisiana and Texas in addition to Arkansas. Gold medals were won by 15 Village players and another eight players won silver or bronze medals.
Another “first” for HSV Pickleball was the 2010 Spring Pickleball League. More than 35 people played in the weekly competitions which took place during an eight-week time frame.
The HSV Pickleball Club members, now over 300 strong, began to petition the Property Owners Administration through the Recreation Department Committee Board and Town Hall meetings for improved facilities. These meetings resulting in the construction of a 14 court complex, individually fenced to limit the danger of stray balls. We also have 7 lighted courts with modern LED lighting for night time play. Windscreens also provide wind protection for all 14 courts.