Avera Will To Build State's Largest Pickleball Facility

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Avera Health has plans to build South Dakota's largest pickleball facility.

The health care provider will construct 12 outdoor courts at its Avera on Louise Health Campus in Sioux Falls at a cost of about $1.5 million.

Pickleball is a sport that's recently grown in popularity, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. It combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong. It’s played indoors or outdoors on a badminton-sized court with a slightly modified tennis net. Two or four players can play with simple equipment that involves paddles and a plastic ball with holes.

Jason Askew is executive director of Sports Medicine for Avera and said the organization wants to appeal to people of all ages.

“Being able to offer something for adults that is growing by leaps and bounds in popularity, both here in Sioux Falls and around the country, is a lot of fun to be able to announce,” Askew said, South Dakota Public Broadcasting reported.

Askew said construction will take a few months, and Avera anticipates the free courts will open to the public by early August.