If you like playing tennis or would like to learn how to play the game, Big Canoe is the place for you! The current tennis facilities feature ten courts for Big Canoe community residents and their friends to enjoy singles or doubles tennis. There are eight lighted outdoor courts—four Har-Tru clay courts two Clay Tec all-weather courts, and two hard courts. Clay Tec courts are constructed of synthetic fiber carpeting and are covered with clay. The feel and speed of the Clay Tec courts are between traditional Clay Courts and Hard courts. They play faster than clay courts and slower than hard courts. An additional two courts are inside the Fitness Center for inclement weather play.
You can participate in social tennis or more competitive USTA (United States Tennis Association) and ALTA (Atlanta Lawn Tennis Association) league play. There are opportunities to play no matter what your skill level or whether you’re a beginner 3.0 (C), or a more advanced player 5.0 (A). If you wish to improve your game, individual and group lessons are available with a tennis pro. Enjoy a match with family or friends and take the opportunity to meet new friends. If you’re interested, there are informal King of The Mountain and Queen of the Mountain round robins played on Saturdays, and weekly Mixed Doubles and Round Robbins. There are also several organized tennis tournaments during the year.
The Racquet Club is a full-service Pro Shop with a full-time tennis pro and a Racquet Club Director, who is USPTA certified. The shop sells and strings racquets, along with a large assortment of tennis apparel and accessories. Call the Racquet Club at 706-268-3367 for information and reservations.
Although a surprising number of folks respond with “what’s that” when they hear that Big Canoe Resort amenities include Pickleball, it actually has become an incredibly popular sport now being played all over the country. Pickleball was invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, a short ferry ride from Seattle, Washington. Three dads – Joel Pritchard, Bill Bell, and Barney McCallum — whose kids were bored with their usual summertime activities, are credited for creating game. Pickleball has evolved from original handmade equipment and simple rules into a popular sport played with a paddle and whiffle ball. According to Barney McCallum, the game was officially named after the Pritchards’ dog Pickles, who would chase the ball and run off with it—the name stuck.
The game is growing internationally as well, with many European and Asian countries adding courts. In 2012, the request for pickleball courts reached the North Georgia Mountains, and initially, two tennis courts were taped off to make them pickleball size, where players are positioned closer to the nets. A few Florida transplants who knew the game from communities there began to give lessons, and it caught on with local residents immediately and quickly had so many players that the POA built four lighted pickleball courts in 2014 and added the new game to the Tennis Amenity. Since then, it has grown so popular that players regularly participate in regional competitions.