By Carol Tannenhauser
Fourteen pickleball courts, accomodating 4-8 people a piece from 7 am – 9 pm, will be available at Wollman Rink, located at the southern end of Central Park, from April 7 to October 9.
That represents 196 hours of pickleball play daily (weather cooperating) — and makes the facility the largest pickleball installation in the Northeast, according to Wollman Park Partners (WPP), which runs Wollman Rink, and CityPickle, which will run the pickleball program.
Here are the details, released Thursday morning:
Full price court rental options range from $80-$120 total per hour for off-peak and peak times respectively, translating to as little as $10 per person for an hour of play. Each game lasts approximately 10-15 minutes, offering the flexibility to share an hour of play with a rotating group of players. CityPickle custom paddles are available to rent for $6 per paddle, or players are welcome to bring their own. Court reservations will be available beginning March 31.
CityPickle programming includes lessons, clinics, open-play, leagues, and tournaments and offers countless opportunities for beginners to advanced players. A diverse slate of CityPickle coaches are available to teach and can be booked by visiting www.city-pickle.com. The venue will also accommodate birthday parties and corporate events.
In case you haven’t heard, pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in the country. Played by people of all ages and physical abilities, it is a perfect fit for Central Park, the press release noted, “one of New York City’s most democratic spaces. It combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong on a badminton-size court that requires a net, paddle and wiffle ball. Enjoying a day of pickleball requires no existing knowledge of the game.”
CityPickle and WPP are making time at the courts available to several nonprofit organizations at no cost, including the Challenged Athletes Foundation, the Boys Club of New York, YMCA of Greater New York, Solutions Now, and Fountain House.
As in seasons past, food and drink will be provided by Great Performances. “Nine private courtside cabanas are also available to rent for socializing and special occasions,” the release said. “The cabanas come with certain courts to maximize opportunities for people to take advantage of the communal nature of pickleball.”
In the off-season of 2022, Wollman Rink was transformed into a retro roller disco, called the DiscOasis.