Pop-Up Pickleball Courts Debut at Dilworth Park

Pickleball is here! CityPickle expands to Philly for the fall, with plans for something more permanent.

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CityPickle Pickleball courts at Dilworth Park / Photography by Laura Swartz

Pickleball has been growing exponentially the last few years, and now Dilworth Park is home to two pop-up courts for the season. From September 7th to October 21st, CityPickle courts will be available to reserve by the hour outside City Hall.

Philly marks CityPickle’s first location outside of New York, but the company’s co-founders Mary Cannon and Erica Desai both have Philly connections. “As a student at Penn, I spent four of my most memorable years in Philadelphia,” Desai said at the courts’ opening. Cannon is a native of Valley Forge and remains a Philly sports fan.

To that end, Philadelphia Union mascot Phang was on hand to commemorate the occasion.  CityPickle was also joined by Ben Franklin.


Ben Franklin plays pickleball at Dilworth Park on opening day of CityPickle’s pop-up courts.

Both joined co-founders in a quick game, demonstrating that pickleball really is for everyone, whether you’re a child, an athlete, a long-dead Founding Father or a snake that somehow has limbs. And Phang really did his best, given those limitations:

The appeal of pickleball is that “it is a sport for everyone, all ages and all abilities, and it promotes joy and community,” Cannon explains. To provide even more accessibility, CityPickle will be partnering with local organizations to provide free pickleball to communities throughout the city. Beginning next week, their first partner, Philadelphia Corporation for Aging will begin weekly sessions for the seniors they serve. Additional partnerships are in the works, Desai announced.

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CityPickle Pickleball courts at Dilworth Park

CityPickle at Dilworth Park is open daily, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. One-hour court reservations are available online (or through the CityPickle app) for $40 per court for up to six people. If you’re new to pickleball — or simply don’t have your gear handy — CityPickle has got you covered. Balls are provided, and paddles are available to rent for $6 each. Of course, if you’ve got your trusty pickleball paddle, feel free to bring it along.

While the two PickleRoll courts will only be at Dilworth through October 21st, CityPickle tells me they are scouting Center City for a more permanent location. They hope to open a pickleball facility here, with an eye toward next summer.