Province Adds Pickleball Courts, Players in Maricopa, Arizona
Written by PickleBall.net
May 01, 2013
One of the fastest growing sports in America for people of all ages is Pickleball, a combination of tennis, ping pong and badminton. For residents of Province, Maricopa’s over 55 Active Adult Community it’s becoming very popular and by year’s end the Province Pickleball Club is hoping to be playing on 9 new dedicated Pickleball courts for competitive play.
The club was formed in December 2011 with 65 active players but since its last “Intro to Pickleball” lesson, the group now totals 125 and is growing in popularity.
The game of Pickleball is played on a badminton court using a wood or composite paddle, and a wiffle ball with the goal of scoring 11points to win. It’s a non-stop game of lobs, volleys and dinks, and is played as close to the net as possible to keep the ball low with the intent to have your opponent make a mistake.
The goal of the Province Pickleball Club was to get the word out to all who call Maricopa home that Pickleball is fun for all ages and what better place to start than in its local schools. With that it mind, club members started making calls and eventually came in contact with Sequoia Pathway Academy’s Athletic Director Nate Wong who asked the million dollar question, “What is Pickleball?”
After receiving an enthusiastic invite from Wong, 4 Province residents went to the school and gave a demonstration for Wong and PE teachers Amy Bratlie and Stephanie Oliver. The end result was a pleasant surprise for both students and volunteers.
For Pathway students Hannah and Sharnell, “this learning experience was one of a kind and we’re extremely grateful for everyone who took their time to help.” A student asked volunteer Dave Ramdorsingh, “Do you guys do this every day?” and when he responded “yes,” the student replied, “I can’t wait ‘till I retire so I can play Pickleball each day.”
As volunteer Bill Brannen said, “it was a win-win for all involved and it gave Province residents an opportunity to give back to the community they call home.”
What impressed volunteers and teachers was that the students took to the game naturally and even mastered the scoring which can be a challenge. “We appreciated the fact that these wonderful people took time from their busy schedules to educate our students on not only the rules of the game but how to play it correctly. The residents love of the game shone through and it rubbed off on the students.” said PE teacher Stephanie Oliver.
“I didn’t want these kids to be in their 50s before they were introduced to such a great sport,” said Pat Yost. The enthusiastic response from Pathway students was quite a surprise for those who donated their time and they’re hoping for future endeavors with those very same students in the coming months.
The ultimate goal for the Province Pickleball Club is that in the future, Pickleball will be played in schools and neighborhoods across Maricopa.