Happy Friday. Whadya know, another celebrity has stepped into the pickleball arena.
This time, it’s not just to dump some money into the sport, hoping for a return…it’s to kickstart the biggest giveaway in pickleball history.
We’ll give you some hints:
Her name is in the Guinness Book of World Records (first artist to reach 100 million followers on Twitter)
She has starred in films and TV shows like Zoolander 2, How I Met Your Mother, American Housewife, and The Simpsons
Hers was the most-watched Super Bowl halftime show
Any guesses? We’ll reveal the answer below.
In This Issue:
🏓 What the erne requires
🎤 And the secret celeb is…
🌳 Pickle protester chained to tree
Earning the Erne
Ernes are hard to come by. They require anticipation, athleticism, and opportunity.
Even if you're able to leap over the kitchen, it's hard to know exactly when to make your move. One way to make the task easier is to bait your opponent.
His opponent, Jackie Kawamoto, is trying to keep him out of the middle of the court by dinking behind him. It works early in the point and he has to go back to retrieve a dink.
Later in the point, Jay uses a little deception:
He moves to his right and leans toward the middle while Kawamoto is preparing for her shot.
When she decides to dink to his sideline, Jay reveals his true intention of setting up the erne.
He springs back to his left, leaps the kitchen, and smacks the erne into the open court.
The key is anticipation. Jay earns the erne by taking the extra step to his right. He knows she wants to get the ball to his sideline. He waits for her head to drop, then makes his move.
Next time you're out on the courts, don't just wait for the opportunity to erne, think about ways you can create it.
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A Pickleball Dream Comes True
Nine U.S. number one singles, three U.S. number one albums, and a host of other awards and accomplishments...now, Katy Perry will also be known as a hero among everyday pickleball players in one lucky US city.
The second-most followed female artist on social media is also noted for her Firework Foundation, which has teamed up with The Dink (we’re blushing) and The Picklr to give away an entire pickleball facility to the city who proves they want it most.
The lack of courts is clearly one of pickleball's biggest issues. It's the key reason we've read headline after headline about wars between pickleballers & tennis players over lines on courts.
It's also the reason many towns across the country rushed to provide their citizens with courts before considering proximity to neighbors and potential noise complaints.
The availability of appropriately-zoned, dedicated pickleball facilities is a mandatory benchmark the sport has to promote if it is to continue to grow...but that requires serious monetary investment.
Katy, a pickleball fan, has helped promote the giveaway so the winning community can benefit from all the sport has to offer.
Learn more about & enter the giveaway here.
Let’s Run it Back
Yesterday, Major League Pickleball released the groups for next month's Dallas event. At first glance, the most notable difference from Atlanta is that the league's top three picks are spread into three different groups, phew.
Group A: (1) Orlando Squeeze | (3) Arizona Drive | (5) Chicago Slice | (8) Texas Ranchers
The Champions from Atlanta, the Orlando Squeeze, find themselves wedged into the group of death this time around. Three of the four teams in the group reached the knockout stage last month.
Group B: (2) DC Pickleball Team | (6) Bay Area Breakers | (7) Columbus Sliders | (12) Atlanta Bouncers
The DC Pickleball Team is the odds-on favorite heading into the event. They had a dominant run to the finals in Atlanta and narrowly missed out on a title.
Group C: (4) Miami Pickleball Club | (9) Brooklyn Aces | (10) Utah Black Diamonds | (11) Dallas Pickleball Club
Miami is the only team in Group C that reached the knockout stage last month. This leaves the door open for the top two women in the game, Anna Leigh Waters (Utah Black Diamonds) and Catherine Parenteau (Brooklyn Aces) to potentially lead their teams into the playoffs.
Get a full preview of the event here.
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Chained to a Tree to Oppose P-B
Hey, pickleball protesters: Earth Day isn’t for another 194 days. So step away from that tree, ok?
We’re looking at you, Molly McCahon, Sandpoint, Idaho resident.
While we admire your convictions and your willingness to chain yourself to a tree to prevent an incoming pickleball and tennis park from cutting 20 trees down at a local public space, we also can’t help but feel as though this is not the hill to die on.
After all, it’s not as though these are ancient trees or anything. According to a local report, they’re only about 30 years old, planted when the space was dedicated to a local sports-dedicated resident.
What’s more: for the 20 trees which would be brought down, 60 more would be planted.
The plot thickens
In a refreshing twist, this protest isn’t about pickleball noise. And it isn’t even just about trees.
Descendants of Frank Travers, for whom the current public park is named, say other family members’ ashes are buried throughout the area.
They maintain that Frank, with his commitment to youth sports in the 70s & 80s, would want it to remain an outdoor sports facility like his descendants intended when they dedicated the land in his name years ago.
The Dink is not here to dismiss the family members’ feelings. If they want to chain themselves to a tree, we could understand.
The report does not specify that McCahon is of any relation to the family, though.
The plans for a tennis/pickleball center seem like they’d benefit many more people than the property does as it stands now…but does pickle (and tennis) progress have to come at the expense of the family’s wishes?
There’s no simple answer to that question. We’re curious to know what you think. Share your thoughts here: how should this situation be handled?