March 11, 2010

PICKLEBALL Wisconsin Style

On Saturday February 20th, thirteen adventurous Pickleball players from Manitowoc accepted a challenge and traveled 72 miles north, northeast to Fish Creek to face an unknown competitor. We thought we were going to enter into “pickup” games with some new Pickleball friends.

Well, upon our arrival, we were greeted by a tournament director who proceeded to welcome us to the Fish Creek YMCA and begin explanation of the tournament we where about to take part in! We scrambled to get our bearings, hurriedly named our partners, received directions to the locker rooms, and readied ourselves for our very first tournament action.

What a time we had…..Pickleball is more than a game. We were greeted and entertained by some of the nicest people you will ever meet. I have been playing this game for at least six years and have met new friends in Florida, Michigan, Arizona, and of course Wisconsin and our friendships are all linked to this fastest growing sport in America…..Pickleball.

The double elimination tournament was very well organized and was complete with a “Pickleball” travelling trophy. Unfortunately, the Manty Pythons were unable to claim this prized possession this time around. Our championship doubles team, a whopping total age of 42 years, had to face an experienced team representing the Fish Creek YMCA, with a total age consisting of 139 years young .

The Pythons gave the “Creekers” all they could handle but the old guys (I can say this because I’m one of them) prevailed. For me, this was kind of bittersweet, my team lost but then, chalk one up for the old guys…..goes to show Pickleball is for all ages!

Manitowoc will host the 2nd annual tournament and welcome our Pickleball friends from Fish Creek on a date yet to be determined. Training has commenced as the Manty Pythons prepare to take the trophy to where it really belongs…..the Manitowoc Two Rivers YMCA.

USAPA Ambassador Tom Brull, Manitowoc, WI