SMPA President’s Fall/Winter Message
Seasons Greetings all,
Holidays are upon us! That means several community centers will be closed to pickleball for 1-2 weeks this month, or at the very least, on the holidays. Be sure to call before going to your favorite community center venue to play PB after December 15th. Check with the community center to confirm that they are open for pickleball at the times you regularly play. Alternatively, you can check online at Time for Pickleball to confirm that drop-in play is occurring when you expect.
Searching For Pickleball Venues
This past month, the SMPA Directors began working on some of the goals the Board established for SMPA for 2020. Specifically, one of our members, Paul Reed, has been working with commercial real estate brokers to find a potential privately owned site that could be developed and serve as a year round indoor pickleball facility. Thank you Paul for all of your efforts! This is not a quick remedy to the problem of how to get more pickleball courts, however, we need to look at every possibility, reasonable and otherwise.
We are looking to our members in our search for a year round site for indoor pickleball. I ask that all SMPA members help us identify potential sites that could satisfy this long term SMPA goal. If you know of any potential site that could accommodate 12-24 indoor pickleball courts with available parking, or if you know someone who owns or controls such a site and may be interested in entertaining discussions about developing their facility or their property, please let me know by sending a note to SMPA. This request is open until we find a suitable site. Please keep your antenna up throughout 2020, and we promise to advise our members when we identify an acceptable site.
We continue to pursue sites on City of Seattle property. As previously reported, in late 2018 and into 2019, the SMPA Board investigated over 40 different sites on Seattle city property with the SPR’s knowledge and using criteria approved by SPR. These sites were winnowed down to the top eight that we believed best met the criteria. Substantial additional investigative work was done on these eight sites. Each site was analyzed using the City’s Race and Social Justice initiative, which seeks to develop and ensure equity in delivering services. Demographic analyses, court development potential, parking availability, public transportation, accessibility, and other factors were applied. In all, several hundred hours were expended in this effort. The final eight sites and all surrounding research were then submitted to SPR twice (last February and again in June) with a request for feedback on the preferred sites. SPR never responded, and moved forward on a West Seattle court complex not on our list. Still we have not abandoned the idea of establishing a partnership with the City on one of these sites. Last month we began inquiring about potential partnership structures with the City. For now we intend to pursue dual tracks, exploring potential opportunities on both Seattle city and metro area private properties. This is a long term activity that tests everyone’s patience. Stay tuned.
One of our strategic goals for 2020 is to revamp our website to make it more informational and user friendly. We need your help. We are looking for volunteers with web site design expertise who are willing to work with us in achieving this goal. If you have this talent or know of someone who does, please send us an email.
This seems like the perfect time remind you all that giving a $20 annual SMPA membership to one of your pickleball friends is a wonderful stocking stuffer and holiday gift. We continue to work on growing our membership so that we can speak with a greater voice. Also, as you consider year end charitable contributions please remember that SMPA is a 501c(3) organization. Know that 100% of all contributions are used to promote pickleball or offer more pickleball opportunities to our members. How to give: log in to your MemberPlanet membership account and make a direct gift; send a check to the address at the bottom of this message, or if you are a FaceBook user, click the Donate button associated with the latest newsletter notification. All SMPA officers and directors serve without any form of compensation on a completely volunteer basis. Thanks for your consideration.
Finally, on behalf of the entire SMPA Board of Directors, we wish each of you the blessings of good health, joy, and peace of the season. With your help and support, much has been accomplished. We are grateful for you all and look forward to spending fun times on the courts in 2020.
Until next time, play hard and have fun on the courts.
Seattle Metro Pickleball Association
Jerry Kindinger, President
North Seattle Pickleball Players Invite All
The North Seattle Pickleball Players at Shoreview Park invite one and all to an End of Year Pickleball Celebration, this weekend, December 15th, 2019. They promise Latin Jazz with no cover, dancing for the brazen, and door prizes. gathering at Aurora Borealis at 16708 Aurora Avenue, Shoreline, WA. Please RSVP so they know how many tables to reserve, and include your plus-one or partner. See you there!
Give Back to Pickleball by Volunteering
Volunteers make the world go ’round, and make events such as Pickleball in the Park and the SMPC tournament possible. We can’t do this work alone, and want to invite our members to apply to the (yes, unpaid volunteer) position of Volunteer Coordinator for Seattle Metro Pickleball Association. Think how that would look on your CV! The job description is summed up in this: Develop more opportunities for SMPA members to participate in SMPA functions. You can send a note to Volunteer about why you would best fill that role. The Board meets in January, and would love to make a decision, followed by a glowing announcement, and then kick open the doors to some great 2020 volunteer opportunities for pickleball play in the metro area.
We have so much court-related news to report that we put it all on our News Bulletin page.
Playing at Ravenna? Be prepared to pay!
If want to play at Ravenna, you now need to sign up here and pay $33 if you want to play on Mondays, or $33 to play on Wednesdays, and/or $33 to play on Fridays. Play all 3 days, it’s $33 x 3 for the quarter.
Note that this was the decision of the local Community Center Coordinator as a means of allowing pickleball to take place during hours when the gym is not open to the public. You can read much more about it on the Seattle Metro Pickleball Association website in an article that outlines the alarming state of pickleball, indoor and outdoor, in Seattle. If you are concerned about this development, we recommend that you email Justin Cutler, SPR Director of Recreation (firstname.lastname@example.org) to offer your praise or complaint.
Pickleball Instruction and Skills
Miller Community Center offers pickleball instruction and skills sessions as part of the LifeLong Learning schedule. Keep an eye out on FaceBook, as well as Time for Pickleball for classes. Don’t forget about Pickleball Station for the great free pickleball intro classes.
USAPA Pickleball Magazine – Special Edition
USAPA National Championships in Indian Wells, California ended November 10, 2019, yielding some memorable matches on center court as well as along the other 48 dedicated pickleball courts that took over the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. USAPA just issued a special edition of their magazine, which includes photos of every medal winner. You’ll also see plenty of advertising, and a lot of great shots of your favorite pros who continue to elevate the game of pickleball. You can read the year-end special edition issue here.
Looking for more competitive play? Grab a partner, sign in to Pickleball Tournaments and look at the schedule for December. Woodinville Sports Club, in association with Pickleball Is Great, is hosting the NW Washington Winter Holiday Classic by PIG at the Woodinville Sports Club, December 20 to 22nd at the indoor facility in Woodinville, WA. Hurry, though, because registration closes this weekend, December 15, 2019. In its second year, this tournament features lots of local players, and you two could be wearing a medal to Christmas dinner. Take a look at their flyer and get out and play!
For the second year, Pickleball is Great presents the 2019 ETC/Kirkland Holiday Pickleball Smash Tournament on December 27 to December 29, 2019 at the Eastside Tennis Center in Kirkland, WA. This tournament drew a great field of local and regional players last year, and promises to do the same. Registration closes on December 19th, so pick a partner and your favorite paddle and head to Kirkland.
Looking further afield, Pickleball is Great (P.I.G) is also presenting the 2020 Olympic Pickleball Tournament at the end of February in Port Angeles. You can view the flyer for more information.