Pickleball – The New Sport?

Pickleball has gained popularity in recent years, especially among a wide range of age groups. It’s known for being a fun and accessible sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and table tennis.

Here are some fun facts about this sport.  It all started back in 1965 on a badminton court. Joel Pritchard, a Washington State Congressman, and neighbors Bill Bell, and Barney McCallam were looking for badminton equipment to entertain their families. (This was before video games!) Instead, they found ping pong paddles and a wiffle ball, and the game was born.

Where did that name come from? There are two versions of the origin of the name.  One rumor suggests it was named after the Pritchards’ dog, Pickles, who enjoyed chasing the balls during the game’s early days. However, the true inspiration came from Joel Pritchard’s wife, Joan, who named it after the pickle boats in crew races. These boats were considered the least competitive, with crews made up of less skilled members thrown together. This name resonated because pickleball itself initially used leftover equipment from other sports, much like the pickle boats crew.

Today you can find pickleball enthusiasts at community centers, PE classes, YMCA facilities and retirement communities nationwide.

And yes, in case you are wondering, Hatteras Island has also joined in the Pickleball enthusiasm.  You can find classes for all age and skill levels at the Fesseden Center in Buxton.  So, if you are on the Island and want to try it out or get in a little practice, head over to the Fesseden Center and join in the fun!

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