WAKE FOREST (NC) - By 9 a.m. on a recent Tuesday, the wait to play pickleball at Flaherty Park’s gymnasium had stretched to nearly a half-hour.
Aaron Cooke, 22, sat on the bleachers and watched three simultaneous games being played while he waited his turn. When he started playing the sport two years ago, Cooke said, the gym wasn’t nearly as busy.
“Now you come here and have to wait 30 minutes to play a match,” he said.
Wake Forest has embraced the growing popularity of pickleball, which is similar to tennis but is played on a smaller court with a paddle and a Wiffle-style ball. The town will build four outdoor permanent pickleball courts at Flaherty Park in the coming year, a $122,000 project.
Now, players gather at 26 basketball and tennis courts throughout town where crews set up pickleball nets and paint lines.
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