Monday, August 26, 2013

Savannah Pickleball League Looking for Players

August 25, 2013 -

Savannah Pickleball Ambassador Lem O’Neal has spent the past two years building up the Pickleball court at Lake Mayer Park. “The facility was just sitting here and was the only one of its kind in Savannah, so I figured if I could fix it up we could get a league going out here,” says O’Neal.

Pickleball is a sports that follows a lot of the same rules as tennis. However Pickleball is easier and slower than Tennis. It is played with a wiffle ball and a paddle, and the competition can be as fierce as desired.

CLICK HERE to read more.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Letter: City shows support for pickleball

August 24, 2013 -
When we recently moved to Aiken, we were surprised that no one in Aiken had heard of pickleball (it has been around for 50 years, but not widespread – now recognized as the fastest growing sport in the country). We approached the Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department to use one of the public tennis courts to play on, and the department’s Director Glenn Parker and Jeff Metz, Athletic/Tourism Director, were skeptical about our request. To their credit, and our everlasting gratitude, they kept open minds while we explained the sport – even the goofy name.

Read more: Letter: City shows support for pickleball | Aiken Standard

Metro Savannah Pickleball

Submitted by Lem ONeal, Ambassador, Savannah, GA

Lake Mayer Community Park in Savannah Georgia has a brand new Pickleball court looking for players. The court surface is VersaCourt and looks great and feels great after hours of play. This is an outdoor court that is available anytime from 10AM to 10PM, free of charge to anyone that wants to play. If you don’t have your own net, ball, and paddles; or if you need instruction; or if you would like to arrange a time to play with others, please RSVP. The park has room to add additional courts as we grow and get more players that want to play leagues. So if you want to play or run a league, please contact Lem O’Neal, Metro Savannah Pickleball Ambassador at or 912-220-8901.

Registration Closes August 31st (mail in), Sept . 5th for Battle of Franklin

  Hi to all Pickleball Players,
The 2nd annual Battle of Franklin is being held September 13, 14, 15, 2013 in Franklin, Tennessee.  This is an age level tournament.  We have attached the flyer and registration sheets to this email for your consideration.  This is an outdoor tournament and the yellow Dura Ball will be used.  Lunch will be provided on Saturday to all players.
Registration deadline is postmark August 31 for mail in entries, September 5 for on-line entries.  To register on-line, go to, and in the city name put Franklin, Tn, and keyword, Pickleball.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Cindy and Nancy
Battle of Franklin Registration 2013 #44-1.pdfBattle of Franklin Registration 2013 #44-1.pdf
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New Flyer  Battle of Franklin 2013 -# 44-1.pdfNew Flyer Battle of Franklin 2013 -# 44-1.pdf
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Senior center offers “Pickle-Ball” for all skill levels
as posted at, August 2013

Jonesville, NC:  The Yadkin Valley Senior Center is hosting Pickle-Ball classes.

Pickle-Ball is a sport for primarily seniors, combining tennis and badminton.

The senior center offers a class Wednesdays at 10 a.m. for people of all skill sets. Players range in skill from “never heard of Pickle-Ball” to expert.

The center, located next to Lila Swaim Memorial Park, provides the equipment. There is no charge to play.

Players use the crafts/exercise room on the right side of the building as a court.

Pickle-Ball was created in 1965 by two men, Congressman Joel Pritchard and Bill Bell, in Washington State. The two men had returned from playing golf and found their families sitting around with nothing to do.

Pritchard’s home had an old badminton court so the two men looked for equipment. The rackets were damaged but they improvised by using four wooden paddles resembling large Ping-Pong paddles.

The net was lowered from badminton’s 60 inch height to 34 inches, and a perforated plastic ball used. The ball catches the air and slows down, meaning players can keep a volley going much longer than in tennis.

Pritchard’s family cocker spaniel, Pickles, was the namesake.

Today the sport draws young and old alike, as was its intention. Ten percent of the more than 75,000 players nationwide are physically active seniors.

Seniors are more than able to play because the game is meant for every age of family, from young children to older members.

There is even an organization that regulates the sport: the USAPA, USA Pickle-Ball Association.

Anyone interested should contact the Yadkin Valley Senior Center at 336-526-1087 for more information. Official rules and a detailed history of the sport can be found at

To contact Taylor Pardue call 336-835-1513 ext. 15, or email him at

Friday, August 23, 2013

Clinic introduces locals to pickleball

Submitted by Mitchell Ball, Ambassador, South Florida

By Sara Shell, Forum Publishing Group
August 23, 2013

On a recent Thursday evening, more than 50 people turned out to play pickleball at Pine Island Park in Davie. The hockey rink-turned-playing court had a line of people waiting for their turn at the sport.

"Having to wait is a good problem to have," said Mitchell Ball, ambassador of the USA Pickleball Association of South Florida.

Pickleball, which is a combination of tennis, ping pong and badminton, has grown immensely. According to the sport's official website, it has become a popular draw among seniors and has more than 200,000 players nationwide.

Ball has been hosting events to help the sport grow locally. That included a recent pickleball clinic and demonstration at Stan Goldman Memorial Park in Hollywood. About 35 people came out to learn about the sport. And because it had such a great reception from community members and officials, Ball has helped implement open play days from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays.

"This will be great for Hollywood," said Eric Brown, Hollywood's assistant parks and athletics manager. "It was my first time seeing the game live, [and] I believe seniors and others will really enjoy this game."

Brown said he picked up a paddle and played in a game and had a great time.

"I look forward to seeing [pickleball] go to the next level in Hollywood," he said.

The sport is played with paddles and perforated plastic balls on a court with a lowered net. Scoring is similar to that of badminton.

Ball said the draw is often the simplicity in learning the game, but it can become very competitive.

"We play very hard," he said of the regular players in Davie. "[Pickleball's] become big down here because so many seniors that live and play up north want to play when they visit here in the winter."

Ball brought the sport to the area after learning to play in 2012. At the time, the only year-round courts were in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Now, since forming clinics and open play in Davie and Tamarac in January, there are 81 players.

"I'd like to eventually have enough cities and teams to have inter-city tournaments and teams playing each other," Ball said.

Local pickleball enthusiast Michael Dippel said "it's a game that any age can play."

"Once it gets around town that the out-of-staters have a place to play, it's really going to grow," Dippel said.

Ball is planning another clinic for 6:30 to 8 p.m. Sept. 8 at the Golden Isles Tennis Center in Hallandale Beach.

For more information, email Ball at

Sara Shell can be reached at

Copyright © 2013, South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Senior Games Participants - Check This Out!

Submitted by: 
Doug Hamilton
USAPA Member,  Los Gatos, CA

As a USAPA member and with the approval of Justin Maloof,
Executive Director of USAPA, my wife and I would like to
introduce ourselves and our company BLASTT, Beyond Limits
Active Senior Tours & Travel, LLC -- a tour and travel
company specializing in taking athletes to Senior Games
competitions all over the U.S.

We provide a one-stop solution including travel assistance,
airport transfers, luxury accommodations and transportation
service to and from the Senior Game events, social
hospitality and local site-seeing excursions.

Because many of the Senior Games include USAPA-sanctioned
events, we are reaching out to the Ambassadors and asking
for your help in reaching players who might be interested in
participating in 2014. This is COMPLETELY VOLUNTARY. We are
not asking that you endorse us but if you or anyone you know
is interested in learning more we can be reached via the
contact information below or through our ad on the USAPA

As an incentive we will offer a 10% discount on all tour
packages for USAPA members.

To see our 2014 schedule visit our webpage,


Doug & Marianne Hamilton, Co-pilots
Beyond Limits Active Senior Tours and Travel, LLC
1 855 252-2788 (toll free)
1 408 395-2800 (office)
1 408 205-9641 (cell)

Monday, August 19, 2013

Aiken a hit as host of pickleball tournament, August 18, 2013

Aiken, SC:  Mike Beckner made a bit of a joke regarding the Palmetto Singles Indoor Doubles pickleball tournament at H. Odell Weeks Activities Center on Saturday, but his point was still true.

“I think it’s going great,” Beckner said. “Best tournament Aiken’s ever had.”

The punchline was that this was the first pickleball tournament Aiken’s hosted, with Beckner and his wife, Loretta, having brought the sport with them several years ago. Still, the reaction to Aiken as a host city was a positive one with play set to continue today.

Local travel seems to be the only aspect of the event impacted negatively by the soggy weather. Beckner said more than participants still made the trek from nine states outside of South Carolina – North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Michigan, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas and Kentucky.



Friday, August 16, 2013

New Space Coast Public Venue

Submitted by
Scott Nelson,  Florida Space Coast Ambassador

I would like to welcome the newest Space Coast Public facility supporting Pickleball. This will be the first facility hosting Pickleball on the north end of our county.  Starting August 20th the Space Coasts 8th public Pickleball venue kicks off.

The Nancy Hanson Recreation Complex located at 7300 N. Atlantic Ave. in Cape Canaveral will be hosting Pickleball Tuesdays and Thursdays.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays the recreation center will be promoting open play from 8am to 11am and from 6pm to 9pm. The courts are also available for rental from 11am to 6pm.

Please invite anybody that has not played before that has not played before and lives on the north end of the county to the kick off on the  20th where we will conducting a free beginners clinic at 6pm.

Fall Schedule Update for other Space Coast Venues

Viera Regional Recreation Center
Pickleball will at the Viera Regional Recreation Center on Wednesday the 14th of August at 3:00pm.  Regular play will be 3pm to 5pm Mondays through Thursdays.

Melbourne Beach Recreation Center
Daytime Pickleball will resume at the Melbourne Beach Recreation Center on Mondays &   Wednesdays from 12noon to 3pm starting on the 19th of August.

Pickleball tournament coming this weekend, August 14, 2013

Aiken SC: Several years ago, Mike and Loretta Beckner moved to Aiken and brought with them the sport of pickleball.

Now, H. Odell Weeks Activities Center is the site of the Palmetto Doubles Invitational Pickleball Tournament on Saturday and Sunday, with 108 players coming from around to country to participate.

“It can be very exciting, if you have four people at the same level, obviously,” Beckner said.

This weekend’s tournament, which begins Saturday at 9 a.m., has been set up to achieve just that. The teams are men’s, women’s and mixed doubles teams and have been divided based on age – 19 through 49, 50 through 64, and 65 and older – and skill level. There are 24 men’s teams, 24 women’s teams and 47 mixed teams.

While Beckner said that none of this weekend’s competitors are as young as 19, there are some that are in their early 20s.

“What they will see ... this is not just for seniors,” Beckner said of potential spectators. “This is a sport for all ages.”

Pickleball benefits players in City Kids Junior Tennis

By Jodi Pree Pickleball Ambassador  August 14, 2013

Another successful Marco Island Racquet Center City Kids Summer Camp came to an end last week.
Many campers return year after year and have been pleasantly surprised with the permanent addition of pickleball.
Tennis pro Wayne Clark briefly introduced the kids to the pickleball basics last summer, but this summer they have been working on advanced strategy and skill.
CLICK HERE to read more.....

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Pickleball By The Sea - Jacksonville Beach Aear, FL

Pickleball By The Sea - Jacksonville Beach Area

Submitted by Verna Griffin
Ambassador , Jacksonville Beach Area, Florida

Thursday night at Jarboe Park a news reporter, Greg, visited the courts to interview and take pictures for the Atlantic Beach Life magazine. The magazine is distributed to approximately 5000 customers. After taking pictures and talking to several of the players, Greg accepted the challenge of learning the game. Hopefully, he will return to the courts to enjoy the fun of our group and the game. Greg will let us know when the article will appear.
Today Pickleball by the Sea volunteers conducted a clinic for the residents of Fleet Landing. Their courts have been resurfaced and pickleball courts have been established along with tennis lines. 30+ people attending the clinic with another dozen sitting on the sidelines encouraging all to have fun learning the great game. Many of the players became “pickled”.
We are seeking funding and or donations to purchase wind screens for the courts. The City of Neptune Beach will allow a company to place their 3’x5’ business logo on a screen for the purpose of letting all know they support Pickleball. We have researched the cost of screening. A Texas company has offered a $250.00 charge for 120’, with free shipping.
In addition, there is a possibility of several used screens being donated towards the end of the year by a local country club. Either way, the wind screens would certainly enhance the game. If you know of a company/business you could solicit for funding in exchange for the placement of a windscreen, please let us know.
The Senior Games (50+ ages) will begin at the end of September. Pickleball will be played indoors at Cuba Hunter Park in Jacksonville. Competition will begin Oct 2nd-Singles, October 3rd-Doubles, and Oct 4th Mixed Doubles. 
Treaty Park in St. Augustine has introduced Pickleball. The park is located right off Hwy 207 east of I-95, 1595 Wildwood Drive (A Kangaroo Station is on the corner of Hwy 207 and Wildwood Drive) Schedule: every Tues. @ 6:30 pm and every Sat. @ 8:30am. Contact: Joe Shakar or Bob Dean for more information Phone: 904-209-0385

Pickled about playing PICKLEball

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Pickleball a hit for older crowd

August 13, 2013 -

RALEIGH, N.C. — Richard Claxon usually plays pickleball three or four times a week - as long as his knees can stand it.

He is joined by former tennis players, exercise enthusiasts and those simply seeking a good time. They are all generally above the age of 50, although anyone is welcome to play.

"It's a tremendous sport for older people," Claxon, 72, said. He began playing a year ago and sees the game not only as exercise but also as a social outlet.

CLICK HERE to read more.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Senior center offers “Pickle-Ball” for all skill levels

August 11, 2013 - 

The Yadkin Valley Senior Center (NC) is hosting Pickle-Ball classes.

Pickle-Ball is a sport for primarily seniors, combining tennis and badminton.
The senior center offers a class Wednesdays at 10 a.m. for people of all skill sets. Players range in skill from “never heard of Pickle-Ball” to expert.

CLICK HERE to read more.

Hollywood Florida Demo/Clinic August 11, 2013

Submitted by Mitchell Ball, Ambassador, South Florida

Our Demo/Clinic in Hollywood, Florida on August 11, 2013 at Stan Goldman Memorial Park Hockey rink attracted 35 people from new pickleball players to park department employees and a city commissioner. People learned the basics of Pickleball.

We are now open Wednesday and Friday nights from 6pm to 830 pm weekly.

Thank you Jan, Doug, David, Jeff, and most important Michael Auclair and Eric Brown.

CLICK HERE to see more photos.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Ambassadors seek pickleball players
August 9, 2013 -

On an overcast Wednesday morning, the Macon County (NC) Recreation Park is bustling with activity.

Children splash in the pool and glide down the water slide. A couple hundred yards away, seniors play doubles on three tennis courts while the Franklin High School girls team practices on two courts.

In between the pool and tennis courts, a different kind of racket sport is being played. Rather than the thud noise of tennis rackets and balls, these players produce a higher-pitched ping from a wooden or composite paddle and a perforated plastic ball. The sport: pickleball.

CLICK HERE to read more.

North Mecklenburg County (Charlotte) Pickleball Venues Growing

Submitted by Bob Nibarger, Ambassador, North Mecklenburg

USAPA Ambassadors Dan Kiurski and Bob Nibarger have to admit that the growth in their region has been simply amazing. In 2012, the Bailey’s Glen Pickleball Club (Cornelius, NC) was formed with only a handful of players. Since that time, venues within North Mecklenburg have grown to a total of three new opportunities to play. North Mecklenburg now sports two outdoor and two indoor court locations. These locations can be found within the USAPA web site and include the Cornelius Parks Department with both outdoor and indoor facilities, and the Lake Norman YMCA (Indoor). The developer of Bailey’s Glen recently announced the development of 4 new courts. This brings the BG total to 5 which will enable BG to host local tournaments. North Carolina is a beautiful state and both Dan and Bob invite you to visit when you are in the area.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Pickleball, Anyone? It's Coming To The Campo Y

Starting in September, the Campo Family YMCA will offer pickleball three days a week., August 5, 2013
Residents can learn all of the nuances of playing pickleball from a Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department coach during a free clinic Wednesday, Aug. 21 at 1 p.m. at the Campo Family YMCA, 3414 Culbreath Rd., Valrico.

For more information, contact Campo Y's SilverSneakers coordinator Kavita Marballi at 813-684-1371, ext. 212 or 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Holiday Park Demo/Clinic August 4, 2013

Submitted by Mitchell Ball, Ambassador, South Florida

Holiday Park, Ft Lauderdale Pickleball Demo happened on August 4, 2013 at 5:45pm-7:30pm. We had 25 people come out and learn the Rules and Skills to play Pickleball. I want to thank Barbie, Debbie, Doug, Jan and Michael and Isabel, Kevin, Fernando and Jeff and Glenna for helping make this a success.

CLICK HERE to view more photos.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

National Senior Games

Pickleball is the newest sensation at the National Senior Games -- and elsewhere
July 29, 2013

It’s pickleball, and it’s the newest medal sport in the National Senior Games.

“It’s a family game,” said David Jordan, president of the USA Pickleball Association. “You can play it anywhere, you can play it in your driveway, if you want to. It’s just a great game. Exercise, and not nearly as taxing on your body as a lot of other racquet sports.

Jim Cetlinski, 59, of Summerfield, FL, returns a shot in his mens doubles pickleball match during the National Senior Games in Cleveland, OH, Monday, July 29, 2013.

Area athletes making mark at Senior Games 

Special to the News-Sun
August 2, 2013

Two of Tanglewood's pickleball players have reflected on the impact these games are having on them.

 "The Celebration of Athletes was held in the arena where the Cleveland Cavaliers play. It was amazing, awesome, cool, but most of all, inspiring. Scott Hamilton was a great emcee," Tom Stadler said. "Two representatives from each state marched in the Parade of Athletes carrying their state flag. We all recited the Oath of Athletes then inspirational stories of athletes who overcame health issues to achieve success were shown. The evening concluded with the passing of the flag to Minneapolis, St. Paul, who will host the next Senior Games in 2015."