Our Courts Are Now Open to the Public!
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Play Pickleball at Oxford Downs
Oxford Downs is thrilled to offer a top-tier pickleball experience, where players can enjoy one of the fastest-growing sports on our state-of-the-art courts. Perfect for both newcomers and seasoned players, our courts are designed to meet official standards, ensuring a fun and competitive environment. To ensure all players have the best experience, we adhere to a clear set of rules that govern gameplay and court etiquette. For a detailed look at these guidelines and to get familiar with the ins and outs of pickleball at Oxford Downs, please visit our Rules of the Court page. Whether you’re aiming to improve your game or just looking for a friendly match, we’re here to serve up excellence!
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Court and Equipment Rentals
For those eager to dive into the world of pickleball, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to get started! Our facilities offer both court and equipment rentals, allowing you to enjoy a game on well maintained courts with top-quality paddles and balls without the upfront investment. And for the enthusiasts looking to gear up, our pro shop is stocked with the latest pickleball equipment for purchase, from premium rackets to professional-grade accessories. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned player, our one-stop-shop ensures you’re fully equipped for your best game yet.
Don’t miss out on the fun and excitement of pickle N’ Poker at Oxford Downs!
History of Pickleball
The origins of pickleball can be traced back to a summer day in 1965 when Joel Pritchard, a congressman, and Bill Bell, a businessman, found their families bored and decided to create a game using ping-pong paddles and a perforated plastic ball on an old badminton court at Pritchard’s home. They initially volleyed the ball over a net set at badminton height, but as play evolved, they lowered the net to 36 inches, and along with Barney McCallum, they formulated rules with the aim of crafting a game that the whole family could enjoy together.
By 1967, the first permanent pickleball court was built in the backyard of Pritchard’s friend, Bob O’Brian. The sport quickly gained structure and recognition, with a corporation formed to protect its creation. Publicity and official acknowledgment of pickleball came with articles in The National Observer and Tennis magazine, branding it as “America’s newest racquet sport”. The first known pickleball tournament occurred in 1976 at South Center Athletic Club in Tukwila, Washington, showcasing the sport’s competitive potential.
In 2023, it is estimated there are a total of over 8.9 million pickleball players in the United States over the age of six…needless to say, this is a sport that’s going to keep growing!