Mission Woods Mayor Darrell Franklin and his wife Laurie have filed a lawsuit seeking a court order to stop play at several pickleball courts at the Mission Hills Country Club near their home.
In a petition filed at Johnson County District Court earlier this month, the couple allege the noise caused by play on the courts is disrupting the “tranquil and peaceful environment” of their residence and causing them “emotional distress.”
Background: The Franklins live on Mission Woods Road, north of the Mission Hills Country Club clubhouse, which is at 5400 Mission Drive.
The address used in the petition matches the address used by Darrell Franklin to file as a candidate with the Johnson County Election Office.
Franklin is currently serving his third term as mayor of Mission Woods, a community of about 80 homes on four streets off State Line Road and Shawnee Mission Parkway.
The Franklins nor their attorneys immediately responded to the Post’s request for comment Monday.
The lawsuit: The Franklins allege the country club has converted outdoor tennis courts into four pickleball courts.
The couple claim that, due to the hard paddle and ball used in pickleball, the game “creates a much louder sound and is “materially more intrusive” than tennis.
The petition claims that the four pickleball courts are less than 200 feet from the Franklins’ home. Laurie Franklin allegedly notified both the club and the city of Mission Hills multiple times about the issue.
Injunctions sought: The Franklins are calling for a temporary injunction to block the club from using the tennis courts as pickleball courts and a separate, permanent injunction on building pickleball courts or playing the game within 600 feet of their property line.
Additionally, the petition calls for “any potential pickleball court construction to include appropriate sound remediation steps” and for the Franklins to “be awarded damages caused by the nuisance to the extent they can be determined.”
The Franklins, Mission Hills Country Club nor the Franklins’ attorneys immediately responded to the Post’s requests for comment on Monday.
More details: The petition, filed in Johnson County District Court on May 10, features more than 40 allegations.
Some of the specific allegations are as follows, as outlined in the petition:
- Mission Hills Country Club knows the usage of the tennis courts as pickleball courts disrupts residential neighborhoods.
- The Franklins have “experienced annoyance, discomfort, inconvenience, and overall emotional distress, including stress, sleep disruption, and anxiety” due to the pickleball courts.
- The club plans to convert more tennis courts into pickleball courts and/or build new pickleball courts.
- The Franklins no longer entertain on their patio and removed Adirondack chairs because it is “no longer enjoyable to sit in them and relax.”
- Laurie Franklin uses a white noise app on her phone to drown out the noise from the pickleball courts and once wore “noise canceling headphones while doing yard work.”
Key quote: “The use of the tennis courts as pickleball courts substantially interferes with Darrell and Laurie’s comfortable use and enjoyment of their property and home,” the petition reads. “Instead of being able to enjoy a quiet evening in their backyard, they are now subject to the repetitive sounds of pickleball, loud music, and frequently vulgar and offensive language.”
Read the full lawsuit below:
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