Grand Island Pickleball Club exceeds Go Big Give fundraising goal

Published: May. 7, 2019 at 6:57 PM CDT
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One local non-profit raised more than expected during Go Big Give, and they're not finished yet.

The Grand Island Pickleball Club raised $58,600 during the 24-hour day of online giving, which put them in the fourth spot overall for most donations.

"That's a boom for us. We did a lot of pre-planning," said Nita Lechner, president of the Grand Island Pickleball Club. "So yeah it was really surprising and exciting, and I'm honored that I get to be apart of this."

The money raised will go toward eight new pickleball courts in Grand Island, which they want to go in Veterans Park. GIPC still needs another $66,400 to get the project moving.

Lechner and her friend, Carolyn Foster, started the club about two years ago. They're both retired gym teachers, and wanted to use their skills to give back to the community.

They teach classes at the Grand Island Parks and Rec Department, the YMCA and the Tennis Center. There's about 200 students that attend their classes.

"It's a very easy sport to learn. You don't have to be a jock or anything like that. You can just be ordinary and you can even have handicaps, physical handicaps, and play pickleball," Lechner said.

Lechner herself has had several intense surgeries, but still continues to play. She said her favorite part of the game is the social aspect, and looks forward to growing the club even more.

After they reach their fundraising goal, the project will be brought to the City Council for approval.

For more details on how to donate, you can contact Nita Lechner at 308-390-3713.

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