While on vacation recently, I watched some people playing pickleball. On our way home from vacation, I wondered: What kinds of alternative sports activities do we have here in Hendricks County, Indiana?
You see, I've always been a sports nut, but I'm not as young -- or as fit -- as I once was. I have retired from decades of playing recreational softball, I can't swing a golf club with any degree of accuracy or power and standing at 5'8" on a good day renders me virtually useless on a basketball court.
I need something that's not as physically taxing as traditional sports -- something where I can get some exercise but minimize the risk of injury. So I watched these people playing pickleball with great interest.
Do we have something like that at home? I wondered. And what else is out there besides pickleball?
Here's what I found:
We have a couple of places in Danville that provide archery ranges and activities, and Hendricks County Parks & Recreation -- where I work -- offers a few opportunities throughout the year to use a bow and arrows.
Kids ages 8-12 can sign up for the Trailblazer day camp at McCloud Nature Park just outside North Salem to get an introduction to archery, among other activities. The camps are offered on July 15 at 10 a.m. (click here to register) or at 1 p.m. (click here to register). (Insider tip: these camps are filling up very quickly, so get registered ASAP!)
Families can also try some archery for free at the Fall Colors Festival at McCloud Nature Park in October.
There are also two clubs in Danville where members can participate in archery activities.
Disc golf is similar in concept to regular golf, in that players throw a disc from a tee box into a standing basket, counting the number of throws it takes to accomplish the task on each hole. As with golf, the object of disc golf is to make as few throws as possible.
Disc golf is very popular nationwide, including in Hendricks County. We even have a Hendricks County Disc Golf Club for anyone who is interested!
Where can you play disc golf in Hendricks County?
- Avon Town Hall Park (9 holes)
- The Master's Disc Golf Course at Calvary Church in Plainfield (9 holes)
- The Ridge at Gary Eakin Community Park in Danville (9 holes)
- Northwest Community Park in Brownsburg (18 holes)
- West Bridge Church in Danville (9 holes)
- Coming in the summer of 2021: W.S. Gibbs Memorial Park in Avon (18 holes)
- Coming soon: Washington Township Park in Avon
Pickleball is a racket sport designed to accommodate players of all ages. Invented in 1965 as a game to involve all members of the family, its popularity is surging across the country and in Hendricks County.
Played on a badminton-sized court with a lower net than in tennis, a ball that resembles a Wiffle ball is volleyed back and forth between teams of two players using paddles that are made of wood or hard plastic.
For more detailed rules about pickleball, click here.
It was a lot of fun to watch people play pickleball while I was on vacation, and the players that I watched included children, senior citizens and everyone in between.
Where can you play pickleball in Hendricks County?
- Arbuckle Acres Park in Brownsburg
- Danville Athletic Club (indoors)
- Ellis Park in Danville
- Hendricks Regional Health YMCA in Avon (indoors)
- Swinford Park in Plainfield
- Coming soon: Stephens Park in Brownsburg
To me, skateboarding sounds like a torn groin, a blown-out knee and several broken bones -- and that's just in my first 30 seconds. But there are a lot of talented skateboarders out there who like to ride and practice tricks on a regular basis.
Fortunately, Anderson Park in Plainfield offers a skateboard park within it. It's free to use as long as skateboarders wear a helmet.
For more information about Anderson Park, click here.
Need More Ideas?
Looking for even more options? Check out our guide to alternative fitness options in Hendricks County.