Magic City Pickleball Club, located in Homewood, Alabama, just outside of Birmingham, recently invested in an all new lighting system to light their modern indoor facility. With six courts and 15,000 sq. feet of indoor real estate to cover, Sandy Thompson, the Club Director, and the team at Magic City Pickleball knew having a high quality lighting system was foundational to a successful club.
Ultimately, Thompson decided to work with All American Lighting, a commercial lighting company in Birmingham, Alabama, as opposed to the other two lighting companies who submitted bids for the project. During their on-site visit, All American Lighting was talking about getting the right “lumen number… needed to get the best light solution for pickleball,” while the other companies were discussing more general lighting concerns. While All American Lighting wasn’t the cheapest option, they were “for sure the most knowledgeable,” which Thompson found invaluable through this process. Finding a company with industry specific knowledge of both lighting and pickleball is crucial for getting the right lighting solution for your club.
Working with All American Lighting, Thompson determined that LED 6’ panels would work best for the facility. Part of the reason she went this direction with lighting was because “it is the best for indoors and comes in a range of lumens that gives [them] really good light” with their 35’ high ceilings. Since the facility had such high ceilings, Thompson understood that choosing the right lighting system would require taking this into account. The lighting bays themselves are set at 32’ to accommodate for a 3’ extension along the ceiling. Further, the decision to have LED lights was driven by their overall brightness and lower cost of use.
Throughout Magic City Pickleball, you will find 35 lighting bays throughout the 15,000 sq. ft. facility, a ratio that was “determined by the size and power coverage of each bay to square foot ratio,” says Thompson. This specific ratio was set by their commercial lighting company based on their industry knowledge of lighting solutions for Magic City Pickleball’s specific needs. Based on player feedback, Thompson believes there is no question that the 35 lighting bays provide adequate lighting for pickleball play within the facility and is confident that they “have the best lights in town.”
When asked about any advice she would give to club owners looking to find a suitable commercial lighting company, Thompson suggests ensuring that the company has in-depth knowledge of lumen power and can give you a “solid suggestion…[for what] you would need specific [to] your facility.” Some considerations that should be accounted for when determining lumen power are your facility’s ceiling height and any overhangs. Moreover, she is adamant that investing in a quality lighting solution will pay dividends for your club so don’t necessarily choose the lowest big simply because of the price. Finally, Thompson emphasizes how important it is to “find a company that knows what is [needed] for pickleball lighting” and not just any lighting company that understands general lighting solutions. Thompson and the team at Magic City Pickleball are excited to continue to grow the sport of pickleball in the Birmingham area and are committed to doing so by investing in specific aspects of their facility such as the lighting.