Serving Up Smiles and Slamming Success | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Serving Up Smiles and Slamming Success

Level up the summer fun by giving pickleball a swing

In a world where ball sports reign supreme, there's a sport that's been quietly gaining momentum, bringing together people of all ages and skill levels. It's a game that blends the finesse of badminton, the agility of ping pong and the strategic intensity of tennis. Welcome to the wonderful world of pickleball. According to the Sports and Fitness Industry Association, pickleball is one of the fastest-growing sports in the country, with a participation increase of 158.6% in the last three years. This recent explosion of pickleball players has been especially prevalent in Bend, after the addition of the 16 pickleball courts at Pine Nursery Park.

click to enlarge Serving Up Smiles and Slamming Success
Lily Hausler
Pickleball enthusiasts experience the excitement, skill and camaraderie of the game at Widgi Creek.

Werner Zhender, co-owner of the Pickleball Zone and a driving force behind the creation of the Pine Nursery courts, describes the remarkable pickleball phenomenon that has taken the city by storm.

"When I came to Bend in 2012, we had 35 to 50 pickleball club members, and nowhere to play. We asked Bend Park and Recreation to build us pickleball courts and it really just exploded from there. Now Bend Pickleball Club has 850 members and 700 people on the waitlist. And that's just at the Bend Pickleball Club, not to mention Widgi Creek, the Pickleball Zone, Sunriver and more!" As the number of pickleball players has increased, Bend has since exploded with places to play.

In honor of the Summer Recreation issue, here is a selection of the finest pickleball courts awaiting your paddle right here in Bend and Central Oregon.

Indoor Courts

The Pickleball Zone

For those new to pickleball, this is a place to start. The Pickleball Zone offers everything from introductory clinics, camps and private lessons, to match play with a pro, and individual court rentals on its eight courts. It also offers annual memberships for those wanting to play year-round. Court rentals available at $40 per hour.

Bend Hoops

Bend Hoops offers an indoor-outdoor experience, providing fresh air while still allowing for play on well-maintained hardwood floors. Drop-ins are welcome, although in order to ensure a spot, reservations can be made through For $10 per 90-minute session, playing at Bend Hoops really seems like a steal!

Widgi Creek

Widgi Creek offers a state-of-the-art pickleball facility with camps, clinics and more, making it a good venue for players of all levels. Non-members can enjoy the pristine courts for $18 a person for 2 hours. Members play free.

Outdoor Courts

Pine Nursery Park

The Pine Nursery courts on the east side of Bend provide a refreshing outdoor experience with plenty of sun, trees and the refreshing breeze of summer. Courts 1-4 are open and free to use at any time, courts 5-16 are occupied by the Bend Pickleball Club at specified times.

Quail Park

This park on Bend's west side offers a beautiful court with a scenic backdrop. It's open to the public at all times free of charge, featuring an extra multi-use court where pickleball can take center stage.

Ponderosa Park

This east Bend park is a haven for families, offering a delightful array of amenities suitable for all ages. With its expansive jungle-gyms and spacious fields, children can engage in endless play, while parents indulge in the thrilling world of pickleball. Bring nets and other equipment.

Outside of Bend


Eagle Crest Resort

The Eagle Crest Pickleball Club, nestled within the Eagle Crest Resort at the Ridge Sports Center, offers two well-maintained indoor courts. The club caters mainly to pickleball enthusiasts of intermediate to advanced skill levels. Arrangements can also be made for beginners to enjoy the game under guidance.


Fort Rock Park

With six outdoor courts, this park provides a lot of space for pickleball enthusiasts to engage in the sport. As attendance varies, the level of competition and skill may vary as well.

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