(Ottawa, ON) May 18, 2021 – The RA is excited to announce the development of a pickleball centre at the main campus on Riverside Drive by refurbishing 13,500 square feet into a seven-court pickleball only centre. This innovative project supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Resilient Communities Grant, will assist in the RA’s long-term recovery by helping to build capacity and resiliency in the aftermath of COVID-19.
Beginning Fall 2021, the RA will offer a wide range of programs supporting the spectrum of participants in the Pickleball Canada Long-Term Player Development model. “Our new Pickleball Centre will tap into the growing excitement and demand for the sport in Ottawa and around the country,” shares Tosha Rhodenizer, RA Chief Executive Officer. “Pickleball is a sport that can be enjoyed by a wide variety of ages, abilities and skill levels.” Further, this unique venue will be capable of hosting a variety of local, provincial, national and international events and will create a “centre court” experience for the culmination of any tournament. As the renovations progress, the RA will offer opportunities for community members to join the new club. Please visit www.racentre.com/pickleball for more information.
Strengthening the RA’s growth in pickleball, will be the addition of Pickleball Canada in the House of Sport. The RA is delighted to welcome Pickleball Canada to the vibrant Canadian House of Sport community located at the RA Centre in Ottawa, a partnership that will not only help grow the sport at both grassroot and national levels, but will enhance the development of this new and unique facility. "Pickleball Canada is thrilled to now have a relationship with the RA Centre and the House of Sport,” shares Tony Casey, Vice President of Operations and Administration, Pickleball Canada.
In 2017, the RA re-developed 37,000 square feet of space to create an innovative, creative, open office environment called the House of Sport. The House of Sport brings a diverse collection of sport organizations, the majority of which are National Sport Organizations (NSOs) and Multi-Sports Organizations (MSOs) under one roof to share a facility where their individual needs are considered but also their co-location can result in positive energy and support. Carla Anderson, the recently appointed Executive Director of Pickleball Canada shares, “I look forward to re-connecting, learning and sharing within the House of Sport’s strong community of sport organizations. Being part of a diverse, dynamic and collaborative environment is going to be valuable for me and provide significant benefits for the national pickleball community. It's going to be great; these are exciting times!" The House of Sport encourages NSOs and MSOs to leverage their shared experiences to deliver increased quality in sport and improved performances nationally and internationally.
“The co-location of like-minded organizations offers opportunities for knowledge sharing, provides a critical mass to leverage operational efficiencies and creates flexibility for employees to meet, collaborate and support each other,” Rhodenizer adds. “By creating a shared environment, the House of Sport works to lower costs and create an administrative centre of excellence that is accessible and beneficial to all organizations regardless of their size.”
The House of Sport, a Canadian made sport hub offers an open concept community complemented by a wide range of services and meeting rooms. Other wrap-around services include Lunch & Learns and topic-based workshops as well as the development of a CEO table for shared learning of great relevance to organizational leaders. This is on top of the opportunity to collaborate with similar organizations and access health and wellness opportunities for staff members. The House of Sport is a community of support and practice within Ottawa that does not exist anywhere else in Canada.
"Joining the House of Sport will greatly assist in the growth and development of pickleball. In addition, we believe we can contribute to the strengthening of the overall system by helping to develop Canadian sport as welcoming, inclusive, accessible, and safe. We are keen and ready to support the planning of opportunities, that will be provided through the new RA Pickleball Centre,” says Casey.