Sunday, August 07, 2022

Pickleball Demo — learn the art of the crazy game

by Whitefish Pilot
| June 29, 2022 1:00 AM

You may not realize this, but pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in the country according to the Sports and Fitness Industry Association.

And Whitefish is no exception. Whitefish citizens are fortunate to have four city-owned outdoor courts near the high school and there are a few opportunities to play indoors during the winter, but judging from how many pickleball enthusiasts there are in this town, that is not nearly enough.

That’s why Carol Atkinson, local philanthropist and mostly retired fundraiser, talked with Don Bestwick about adding six pickleball courts to Smith Fields, the sports complex south of town which is overseen and maintained by the nonprofit Project Whitefish Kids. Bestwick and the PWK Board were very receptive to the idea and the fundraising began a few months ago.

The fundraising goal is $250,000. As of late June, the team is more than halfway there having raised over $150,000 thus far. The awesome team behind the project consists of Carolyn Pitman, Gayle MacLaren, Nancy Cawdrey, Nancy Svennungsen, Norma MacKenzie and Gloria Nelson.

If you would like to try your hand at pickleball, there will be a demonstration and instructional session on Saturday, July 9 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Whitefish High School pickleball courts on Pine Avenue. No need to bring gear — paddles and balls will be available.

The event is free but donations will be gladly accepted. If you would like to donate through more formal channels, go to and click on ‘Donate’, where you can search for PWK Pickleball Court Fund and make a tax-deductible donation. Or, send a check to Whitefish Community Foundation, PO Box 1060, Whitefish, MT 59937 and write PWK Pickleball Court Fund in the Memo line.

Recent Headlines