About Us

Board of Directors

CAPA is managed by a seven person Board of Directors, which meets annually in April for elections, budget setting and member input. It meets periodically throughout the year as needed. Board Directors are unpaid volunteers and may serve up to two consecutive two year terms. Because CAPA is a non profit corporation, Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws were required to be filed with the State of Minnesota and the IRS. CAPA has been approved as a 501c3 tax exempt corporation by the IRS, which allows it to undertake various fundraising efforts that support pickleball in our area. 

Membership and Dues

When setting up the Bylaws that CAPA is required to have, it was decided to move beyond the voluntary donation process that had been used by the local players in earlier times. At the first annual meeting in April, 2019, CAPA established an annual dues paying membership of $10.  Menbership is open to all members of the community that are interested in promoting the sport of pickleball. Member dues are used to make improvements to the indoor and outdoor facilities we play at;  purchase portable nets, beginner paddles and balls; provide windscreens, information kiosks, and benches at Central Green Park and other activities supporting pickleball in the county. In addition, we contract with the City and the Army National Guard to reserve the use of Central Green Park and the Armed Forces center for open pickleball play. 

Before there was CAPA

In 2015, a visionary pickleball enthusiast named Gary Palmquist gathered a group of friends and rented space at the Armory.  They also approached the City of Cambridge about using a neighborhood tennis court as a dual purpose PB and tennis court. The City agreed and lines were painted at Pioneer Park. Gary purchased portable nets, wooden paddles and balls out of his own pocket. Next Gary and Dick Welch advertised free lessons in the local papers. Over 50 people responded!

Soon there were spirited Pb sessions going many days of the week. About that time, the City was planning to add a new tennis court at Central Green Park. Gary and Dick went before the City to ask that the plan include four new Pb courts. The City was able to find the means to add another tennis court and four Pb courts to its plan.

Construction began in the summer of 2016, and by fall, the four new PB courts were open. Throughout the process, players had been raising money informally.  Players were asked to make voluntary donations outdoors ($2/player).  Additional income was generated at the Armory whenever more than 16 players participated. Next, the Cambridge-Isanti School District Community Education coordinator worked with us to add evening pickleball at one of the schools during the winter/spring semester. The sessions started in January 2017, with two evenings a week at Isanti Primary School (and more free lessons).  Later that year, supplemented by a grant from the Allina Health System's Neighborhood Health Connection, 35 new players attended an eight week schedule of lessons and drills. By the end of summer, pickleball players were able to raise and donate $5000 towards windscreens, benches, a kiosk, court signs and equipment for the new courts.

Getting bigger

In 2018, even more people have shown up for free lessons, and the outdoor courts are crowded. Towards the end of summer, players approached the City about possibly adding more exclusive Pb courts at Central Green and offered to help with the expense.  At that time, it was not possible for the City to commit to the idea. Nevertheless, the City and the Pickleball players continued to talk about the future of the sport within the community. One year later, in the summer of 2019, the City and representatives of the pickleball community decided to add an expansion project at Central Green Park, if it could be economically added to the 2020 street project. Also in the summer, with the help of Allina Health, 6 weeks of Drill and Play was conducted for 32 players.

4 More Courts

There will be a planned street reconstruction project in 2020, as there is every other year. The City has agreed to place an "add-on" bid for  4 more pickleball courts in the street project "Request For Bids". They would be built adjacent to the west side of the existing four.  A half court basketball court is proposed on the north side of the new courts to match the north end of the tennis court enclosure. The City has asked, and CAPA has agreed to pay 25% of the estimated cost of $80,000. As of  early February, we are within a few thousand of our goal of $20,000. Plus we have additional money received from a donation that is earmarked for windscreens and benches on the new courts. There is a caveat to this, however. Bids might be predictable, but that doesn't mean they always come in as estimated. There will still need to be an evaluation of the bid and it must be approved by the City.  If you are reading this and think you would like to help us meet our goal, please use the Contact Us link to reach out. We'll get back to you. If, for some reason this doesn't go through, we'll return your donation.

CAPA is born

As you can tell, there are a lot of dedicated pickleball enthusiasts in our County. We're also willing to contribute our own money to improve the facilities in our communities. Without a formal entity, donations and income are kept by an individual in a private bank account. If a grant is received, that individual may have to consider that as taxable income. Plus there is the whole idea that one person has the burden of "doing all the work". And so, in the fall of 2018, a group of us started strategizing about forming a non profit corporation, that could be accountable to a much larger group of players. It would be able to accept donations, make purchases, maintain a bank account and more. It would be governed by a Board of Directors and accountable to its membership. In January 2019 papers were filed with the Minnesota Secretary of State and the IRS. Cambridge Area Pickleball Association , Inc is now a 501 c3 non profit corporation. You can learn more about CAPA Board meetings and actions when the Documents section is finished.

Board of Directors

Mike Mueller, President

Diane Hennig, Vice President

Konnie O'Neil, Secretary

Mary Person, Treasurer

Dick Welch, Member at Large

Bill Smrekar, Member at Large

Tom Olson, Member at large

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