Court Side News Headlines
NOTE: The PAO is always looking for news items & photos that might be of interest to pickleball players in Ontario. Please forward your news items to email@example.com
Tillsonburg ON - Thanks go to Angela Newson and Abby Malott of the Stonebridge Community Centre for organizing a successful referee clinic on May 4. The instructors were Pickleball Canada Ontario Provincial Ambassador Dave Hall, PAO President Ken Twilley and PAO Secretary/Membership Chair Roy Wilson. The clinic ran from 1-4 in the afternoon and included practical instruction as well as practice time on the courts. Ten refs-in-training attended from as far away as London, Brantford and Port Rowan. All ten plus the three instructors are pictured in the photo to the left.
PAO member Susan Singleton is shown here with the new, terrific looking PAO banner that will be used at clinics, tournaments etc. There is no need to hang this banner as it is a free standing and rolls back into it's own container and comes with a carrying bag.
by Kelly Steele, Windsor Star, Mar. 7, 2013
Windsor Star reporter Kelly Steele visited the Riverside Baseball Centre on Feb. 27 and interviewed Alice Bell and Barb Dean, a couple of the Windsor and Essex County Pickleball Association founding members. When asked "Why Pickleball?", Alice responded with a most unlikely answer when she said, "“We looked around at things we could do, like belly dancing and zumba,” Bell, 80, said. “But we thought ‘maybe not.’ And we thought about pole dancing, but I’m pretty sure my OHIP wouldn’t cover any injuries through that, so we decided on pickleball.”
Pictured L-R: Suzanne Piercell, Owen Jones, Barb Dean.
by Barbara-Ann MacEachern, myKawartha.com
Members of the Pickleball Association of Ontario were in Lindsay Friday (Jan. 11) to show the community how to play the sport, which will be offered at the Victoria Park Armoury every Wednesday morning until April
(LINDSAY) Bringing together tennis, badminton and table tennis, Pickleball is a sport whose popularity is spreading like wild fire across North America.
Members of the Pickleball Association of Ontario were on hand at the Victoria Park Armoury Friday (Jan. 11) for a demonstration of how to play the game, ahead of the opening of a Pickleball League in Lindsay.
About 60 people came out to learn about the sport, putting the knowledge to use immediately, either in pairs on the court or individually, bouncing the ball off the wall.
The sport is played on a badminton-sized court with a whiffle ball the size of a tennis ball and a solid, smooth-surfaced, short-handled paddle that is bigger than that used in table tennis.
"It's great for seniors, but the kids also really love it," says Russ French, the past director of the Pickleball Association of Ontario and current Canadian ambassador.
Mr. French explains that the sport was invented in 1965 by two politicians in Washington, who had a dog named Pickle that used to retrieve their wild balls. He says the popularity of the sport began to pick up in Canada in the late 1980s when snowbirds began bringing it back to Canada after learning it in the U.S., leading to what Mr. French describes as an explosion of interest in recent years.
There are currently about 30,000 players affiliated with the sport south of the boarder and about 10,000 in Canada, Mr. French says.
"And it's growing every day."
There are now Pickleball clubs in Oshawa and the surrounding area and the Pickleball Association of Ontario was doing a demonstration in Fenelon Falls the week before it visited Lindsay."It's everywhere," adds Shelley Cooper of City's parks, recreation and culture department.
Karen White of Lindsay, a recent retiree, already plays badminton at the Armoury, so coming out to try a new sport was a no-brainer.
"I do enjoy keeping active, so I do look for anything new and interesting to try."
And how does she feel about Pickleball?
"It's a great game...I'll definitely come out and play."
"My motto for retirement is: you don't have to be bored. There are things to do if you want to do it," she adds.
The City of Kawartha Lakes will host weekly, pay-as-you-go Pickle Ball games at the Victoria Park Armoury every Wednesday from 10:30 a.m. until noon from Jan. 16 to April 24. It costs $3,15 per person to participate.
Instructors and organizers are shown above, left to right: Dave Werry, Shelley Cooper, Joseling Sikorski, Russ French, Randy Elliott, Marlene Elliott, Hans Tim.
For more information, contact Ms Cooper at 705-324-9411 ext. 1335, or to receive schedule updates, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Updated schedules will also be posted at www.city.kawarthalakes.on.ca/recprograms.
For more information about the Pickleball Association of Ontario email email@example.com or visit www.pickleballassociationofontario.org or www.pickleballcanada.org.
Fenelon Falls, Ont. - Jan. 4, 2013
Thanks to a lot of hard work by Minden PAO member Doug McIntosh, Fenelon Falls Pickleball Assoc. organizers Jane Andrew, Donna Peneycad, Mike Belton, Jean Belton and Durham Region PAO members Russ French, Joseline Sikorski, Marlene Elliott, Randy Elliott and Hans Tim, the FFPA Demo Day on Jan. 4, 2013 was a huge success.
Pictured here are the organizers and instructors who volunteered their time and expertise for the day.
Left to Right: Doug McIntosh, Hans Tim, Joseline Sikorski, Jane Andrew, Donna Peneycad, Marlene Elliott, Randy Elliott, Russ French
Absent: Mike & Jean Belton
The CHEX TV News clip on the event can be viewed by clicking this link:
The following email was sent to the PAO after the event by Jane Andrew, FFPA Demo Day organizer:
I am excited to tell you that the Fenelon Falls Pickleball Association's (FFBA) FIRST open house was a HUGE success. We had over 80 show up (those that registered - some did not) ~ an AMAZING turnout for a small town! Everyone that brought the proper footwear was up and trying it - and thanks to the instruction given by the Minden and Oshawa players confusion was kept to a minimum! Best of all -- everyone seemed to be having a ton of fun!
Russ was fabulous at explaining the process and keeping the rotation going - and the players from Minden and Oshawa were incredibly patient with all the newbies! AND they are darned good players!!!
I cannot say enough about Doug McIntosh and his contribution to the start up. From the start he's been our number one cheerleader - and a driving force in getting this off the ground. I - who have only played three times - would not have been able to do it without him.
So, the open house is over and 'regular' play starts next week! The committee is small - but we got our first volunteer today! How's that for success! It was great to see CHEX TV there as well as our local counsellor, Doug Elmslie. Shelley Cooper, the community development coordinator for the City of Kawartha Lakes Parks & Recreation Department was there as well - and was tremendously accommodating from the get-go.
Thanks again - everyone - for your assistance. Fenelon Falls Pickleball appreciates it!
Jane Andrew on behalf of the FFPA!
Mike and Jean Belton, Donna Peneycad, Doug McIntosh (honorary ambassador from Minden)
Congratulations to everyone connected with this event for a job well done.
PICKLEBALL DEMO DAY
FRIDAY JANUARY 11, 2013
10:30 AM-12:00 PM
- Victoria Park Armoury, Lindsay, Ontario
- Free Demonstration/Open House
- Experienced Players On Hand to Introduce the Game/Rules
- Equipment Provided
- Everyone Welcome!
For information on the open house please contact 705-324-9411 ext. 1335
Article & Photo Courtesy Tillsonburg News.com
TILLSONBURG - Pictured to the left are: Pat & William Campbell (Port Rowan) & Abby Malott, Tournament Organizer
Many of the 28 participants in the first ever Stonebridge Friendly Play Pickleball Tournament sported T-shirts with Proud to be a Pickler on their backs.
On Saturday, Nov. 24, 14 beginner-level teams from as far away as Tecumseh, Michigan met at Glendale High School in Tillsonburg to play pickleball, a sport that combines elements of tennis, ping-pong and badminton.
Pickleball is relatively new to this area. Learn to Play Pickleball classes were being offered by Stonebridge Community Service this past summer.
“The idea of hosting a beginner level Friendly Play tournament came about when we were brainstorming ways for our new picklers (someone who plays pickleball) to become more experienced and confident with their play,” said Abby Malott, health and wellness coordinator at Stonebridge. “We are always looking for ways to bring people together for fun and fitness.”
Although pickleball is a sport largely played by seniors, the Stonebridge Friendly Play Tournament encouraged beginner level players of all ages to join in the fun. As a result, the tournament included teams of fathers and sons; seniors and 20-somethings, husbands, wives and friends.
After a morning of round-robin play, the top four teams from each division went on to play in semifinal championship games. In the end, the winning team in the Women’s Double division was Carol Bossenberry and Bonnie Cohoe of Woodstock. The winning team in the Men’s Double division was Andy Hall and Gerald McKichon from London and the winning team in the Mixed Double division was Jane Kemp and Dave Ancil from Brantford.
One of the many highlights of the day included The Friendliest Game of Them All, where the fifth place teams from the Women’s Doubles division and the Mixed Doubles division faced off. In the end William and Pat Campbell of Port Rowan came out on top and were awarded medals for their excellent efforts at the tournament.
Although the medal winners bore some pretty big smiles, it was evident that all of the players were more than happy with their efforts and the tournament as a whole.
“It was a really good experience for our first pickleball tournament,” said Judy McLean, a beginner pickleball player from Tillsonburg.
If interested in learning to play pickleball, contact Abby Malott, health and wellness coordinator at Stonebridge Community Services, at 519-842-3200 extension 209 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor's Note: PAO Executive members Ken Twilley and Roy Wilson, with assistance from PAO member Scott Revell, attended this tournament and had a good time refereeing the medal matches and giving some instruction.
Oct. 27-28, 2012 - Direct Energy Building, CNE, Toronto, Ont. Elvis was in the building and so was the PAO and a group of very willing and enthusiastic volunteer members.
On October 27-28th, the PAO participated in the Toronto Zoomer 'Lifestyle' Show, Direct Energy Building, CNE by setting up two demonstration courts and we put on a healthy display of pickleball for the spectating public. The space provided
by the Zoomer Show organizers was immediately left of the main stage attractions and if we did not become the main attraction that week-end, we must have been a close second.
What was surprising about our intended demonstration, was the fact that the public didn't hesitate to take part; most who showed an interest were given a website business card and pickleball brochure but many wanted to take part
in the instruction that we offered to provide. On Saturday, we had over 100 people take part by coming onto the courts and hitting the ball back and forth with our members. Sunday was about half that number but the enthusiasm displayed
by these newcomers still was pretty high. There were a few times we surveyed the courts and they were filled just with spectator guests. The most common question asked was "where can I play this sport" and our volunteers gladly helped answer that question by referring them to the PAO website, noting that there was a wealth of pickleball information there for all.
Now, what was that about "Elvis in the building"? Throughout both days, an Elvis tribute artist paid us a visit and at one point, showed off with a paddle and ball.....doing the pickleball rock! On Saturday, Charlie Chaplin was another visitor who couldn' t resist a photo shoot below the PAO banner that hung above our booth.
BUT, the highlight for most of us, present at the time, was the young fellow in the wheelchair who asked if he could "give it a try"..........that was an understatement; I just happened to be on the court at the time and that guy could rally back and forth with the best of us. Physically challenged to play pickleball, NOT in the Direct Energy building, that week-end........the mood was 'electric' and everyone that took part appeared to have a 'shocking' good time.
Thanks to all who took part in this show exhibit.
Roy Wilson, PAO Membership Chair & Zoomer Show Co-ordinator
Nov. 13, 2012 - News Announcement From PAO Executive
To All Members of the Pickleball Association of Ontario The past several months, the Pickleball Association of Ontario (board members) has been
reviewing the future of indoor tournament play and we believe an important aspect of this review
is the need to standardize the type and colour of ball that is used for future tournaments.
We are well aware that over the past two years, with the growth of pickleball in Ontario,
there has been a lot of controversy about type of ball that is used for 'indoor' play.
This controversy then leads to confusion when a tournament is being planned, especially
on the scale of the PAO Open tournament that was held in Oshawa, back in September.
The confusion also spirals down to the local clubs who order balls and play recreational pickleball
and we all know that during this time, the real enthusiast player is preparing for that 'next tournament'.
The PAO is not mandated to tell the local recreation departments or pickleball clubs what
type of ball to use or colour for that matter, but in order to standardize tournament play
and provide some guidance for our membership, we do feel an obligation to clarify what we
believe is best for the game, in this province.
In this light, the PAO has determined that it best that we recommend one type and colour
of ball for indoor tournaments and we believe that it will likely have a positive influence
on the type of ball that will be used during local club recreational play.
The PAO Board has decided to create a 'short list' of approved balls that meet the criteria
that we consider important, that being Safety, Cost, Popularity, Playability and Availability.
At this time there is only one ball that merits inclusion on this 'list' and that is the JUGS 'green'
big hole ball.
We know that this decision will not please everyone but we trust that you will understand
why we felt there was a need to make this particular decision.
On Behalf of the Board of Directors,
Pickleball Association of Ontario (PAO)
Pickleball participation still growing
Mississauga, ON Oct. 23, 2012 - by Iain Colpitts
Gerry Infeld has watched pickleball grow from a relatively unknown pastime into the most popular sport at the 2012 Ontario Senior Summer Games.
All-time high. Bill Gohn from Port Perry in the annual Mississauga Pickleball Association Invitation tournament at the Mississauga Valley Gymnasium Tuesday rose up high to return this ball while his partner Zoli Hartai watched in anticipation. Staff photo by Fred Loek
A game that traces its origins to Washington almost 50 years ago, pickleball is a racquet sport combining elements of tennis, badminton and table tennis.
It's a popular game among seniors and if registration numbers at this afternoon's Pickleball Mississauga Association Invitational tournament are any indication, Infeld expects the sport's popularity to keep growing.
"We opened registration around the Senior Summer Games (in mid-August) and reached the maximum number of participants by early September," said Infeld, president of the PMA. "I tell people that pickleball at the Senior Games was the most popular sport (with) the most number of players at 110. That's out of the 1,300 participants in 18 games and sports."
This afternoon's tournament attracted 48 participants from as far away as London. They were divided into competition in the 55-plus and 65-plus age groups.
Now in its second year, the Mississauga tournament is one of only a few held in Ontario.
In addition to the 2012 Ontario Senior Summer Games tournament held in Brampton, the Pickleball Association of Ontario Provincial 50+ Open was held in Oshawa in September.
The game is played on a badminton court using a paddle and a wiffleball.
"It's still a young sport and a lot of seniors are happy with just playing recreationally," said Infeld, who won a bronze medal today with partner Sam Prodhan in the men's 65+ category. "But when you see some of these people play, you'll see how athletic they can be."
Pickleball was introduced to Mississauga in 1993 when John and Margaret Hoyt brought the game home with them from a visit to Florida. They were recently presented with an Outstanding Contribution to Community Sports award by the Mississauga Sports Council.
Other winners from today include Mississauga's Lloyd Brassington and Paul Schirripa (men's 55+ doubles), London's Peter Singleton and Ken Twilley (men's 65+ doubles), Whitby's Anne Robertson and Port Perry's Joan Archer (women's 65+ doubles) and London's John and Marcie Blackwell (mixed 55+ doubles).