Castle Creek Country Club, pickleball and the Pasadena Senior Games

Castle Creek Country Club, home to one of Southern California’s few pickle ball venues.

Want to go the Pasadena Senior Games, yet stay in San Diego County? Want to see pickleball.

Pickleball? Or do not pass go, simply start with what the heck is this all about?

Long story not so short, the Pasadena Senior Games hosted by the Pasadena Senior Center features 35 different competitions. Everything from archery, badminton basketball, bowling, cycling, golf  to power lifting road racing, soccer, softball table tennis, tennis swimming, track and even field takes place during June.

Competition also extends to senior-associated or non-mainstream sports like shuffleboard, lawn bowling, disc golf  there’s even billiards and fun walks. All events are held in, and around pasadena.

But then, there’s pickleball. Men’s singles and doubles, mixed doubles, women’s singles and doubles — hold the mustard and mayo — are scheduled from June 11-12 and June 18 at Castle Creek Country Club, Escondido.

Who knew?

Castle Creek has something they don’t have in, or around, Pasadena. Actual pickleball courts, pickleball pros and everything pickleball, including free beginner’s clinics and proper equipment. It’s one of only a handful of pickleball facilities in Southern California. Other venues are at Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach, Long Beach, Tustin, Laguna Niguel, Cerritos and Palm Springs.

Which leads to the next question: What the heck is pickleball?

Kind of like a cross of ping-pong in steroids, min-tennis and badminton, pickleball is a racquet sport that combines elements of badminton, tennis, and table tennis. Two, three, or four players use solid paddles made of wood or composite materials to hit a perforated polymer ball, similar to a whiffle ball, over a net.

The sport shares features of other racquet sports, the dimensions and layout of a badminton court, and a net and rules similar to tennis, with a few modifications.

Pickleball was invented in the mid 1960s as a children’s backyard pastime but quickly became popular among adults as a fun game for players of all ages, pickleball advocates say. An estimated 125,000 people nationwide participate in the sport. Mixed doubles is considered the most popular format.

Pasadena Senior Games 2016

Want to see the Pasadena Senior Games. Go to Escondido in mid-June.

Want to see the Pasadena Senior Games. Go to Escondido in mid-June.

The California Senior Games Championships are organized through the Pasadena Senior Center.

The National Senior Games Association is a nonprofit member of the U.S. Olympic Committee and governs the National Senior Games, the largest multisport event in the world for seniors.

There is no charge for spectators to watch the spirited events, which include dozens of sports ranging from archery to volleyball at venues in Arcadia, Burbank, El Monte, Escondido, Glendale, Highland Park, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Simi Valley and Van Nuys.

“These remarkable athletes are shining examples of the benefits of an active lifestyle that embraces health and vitality,” said Akila Gibbs, executive director of the Pasadena Senior Center. “I encourage everyone to come out and see them in action and cheer them on.”

The California Senior Games Championships are qualifying events for the biennial National Senior Games that be will held in June 2017 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Castle Creek’s schedule is as follows:

Saturday, June 11

• 8:30 a.m. – Men’s doubles and women’s singles pickleball at Castle Creek Country Club, 8797 Circle R Dr. in Escondido.

Sunday, June 12

• 8:30 a.m. – Mixed doubles pickleball at Castle Creek Country Club, 8797 Circle R Dr. in Escondido.

Saturday, June 18

• 8:30 a.m. – Women’s doubles and men’s singles pickleball at Castle Creek Country Club, 8797 Circle R Dr. in Escondido.

As for Castle Creek pickleball. Courts are open 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Two dollars gets a player full-session access. Cost-saving memberships for regular players also are available. Castle Creek is at 8797 Circle R Drive, Escondido 92026. For more info email

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