April Showers bring…Snowbirds.

It is the second week of April and just like the Swallows returning to Capistrano the snowbirds are flocking back to Bend.  Maybe not flocking.  Straggling is probably a better word.  But they’re coming, and none too soon.  Fortunately they don’t build mud nests in our eaves or poop on our cars.  PNP was jumping today with 8 courts going steadily and folks waiting to get a game.  Things are heating up in Bend and it’s time to catch you up on the latest news.

It’s a camel: In my other life, I learned that “the camel is a horse designed by committee.” As I watch the Courts Use Group (CUG) take a zig-zagging path in planning summer play and trying to meet the diverse needs of this fast-growing club, the truth of that analogy becomes more evident. Not that it’s a bad thing. It’s just amazing how much back-and-forth goes on as the group hammers the plan into shape. But that’s all you get for now. Just rest assured that work is progressing, the schedule will be unveiled soon, and there will be something for everyone to like – and perhaps to not like. In the meantime the CUG, under the guidance of Werner Zehnder, continues to do a great job of identifying and addressing the club needs.         Special thanks go to Werner and the other CUG members: Doug Cleavenger, Perry Deutsch, LaVerda Gallagher, Andrea Barss, and Gail Miller.

Ratings: As you may have read earlier, our recent survey revealed that 63% of respondents wished to be evaluated for a move up to the next level.         We are now up to 145 responses, and that percentage is holding but now the numbers are up to 93 people. (Keep in mind that only a third of the club answered the survey, and the number of people seeking ratings changes is likely to be substantially higher.) Along with the organized play schedule, the CUG is also working on designating and training raters so we can begin that process as soon as possible. We want to get as many people rated as we can before the start of organized play, which is tentatively planned for May 18. It will be a lot of work so please bear with us!         Speaking of the survey, our thanks to the 145 members who responded to help shape plans for the summer season!

It’s 1%. Really: Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, California, used to have a “Haunted Shack” attraction where people were tricked into thinking that water ran uphill or people could stand at incredibly odd angles or sit suspended in mid-air. Of course, it was all an optical illusion caused by creating a visual image that differs from reality. The same effect is manifested in the construction of the new courts at PNP. Only you don’t have to go all the way to Buena Park to see it. The contractor and Bend Park & Rec have been deluged with comments from people who believe that the slope of the new courts is steep enough to operate as a ski jump. (Okay, well not that bad, but it still looks pretty steep.)   The fact is that the slope is 1%, which is the standard slope for a tennis court. That is .12 inches per foot. In 160 feet, the courts slope 1.6 feet or 19.2 inches. The visual effect is largely caused by slope of the parking lot, which happens to slope in the opposite direction. Tell all your friends…

PNP Construction:         This week the contractor has been installing fence posts. The storage shed appears to be completed and the shade structure is up. Pictures are on the website at the PNP tab.

Tournament volunteers needed! We need your help in making our tournaments successful! Our tournaments raise funds that the club uses to enhance pickleball for all of us. We need your help to make our tournaments enjoyable events that keep people coming back for more! We will need set-up and take down workers, referees, desk operations staff, first aid staff, and a staff for a variety of other essential functions during the tournaments. When the call comes out for volunteers, please consider giving a few hours of your time.

Upcoming Tournaments:         Lisa Palcic is helping the Summit High School Tennis club with a fundraiser pickleball tournament on April 18 & 19 at PNP. It will be a fun and interesting format. Details are available on the flyer, which you can see HERE.

The Oregon Senior Games Pickleball Tournament is June 19-21 at PNP. The tournament currently has about 200 registrants. The USAPA Northwest Regional Big Country RV Bend Pickleball Tournament (try to say that without taking a breath!) is August 14-16 at PNP and currently has about 250 registrants.

There is still plenty of room left in both tournaments! If you need a partner, there is an active list of people needing partners at the registration website. From the Tournaments tab on the BPC website, click Upcoming Tournaments, and REGISTER NOW at the tournament listing.

A Boys & Girls Club Benefit Tournament is tentatively scheduled for September 12, this one-day doubles tournament will raise funds to help keep the Bend Boys & Girls Club providing valuable services to the youth in our community. We will be seeking community sponsors and club volunteers for this event. More on this later.

“Growing Pickleball” website:         AJ and Irene Fraties are truly pickleball ambassadors. They constantly strive to introduce and develop pickleball wherever they find an opportunity.         With their long involvement in so many aspects of the game, they have accumulated a wealth of pickleball knowledge.         They are constantly asked for guidance on all things pickleball; from equipment to court design to training to club development and operations. To save time and make the information instantly available to anyone, they have created a pro bono website called Growing Pickleball (http://www.pickleball.biz) that is fun, interesting, and easy to use. Take a few minutes to visit the site and look around! You will be amazed at the quantity and quality of information you will find there!

Winter Play at the Boys & Girls Club is winding down. Although numbers have dwindled, (caused no doubt by the fantastic weather in February and March) there are still 5 sessions a week to help get us through the last gasps of Winter weather that have been appearing sporadically in early April. Our thanks go out to David and Sherie Shirley and Jan Patchett for planning and scheduling all of the sessions, and to Jamie Filipeli for keeping the finances straight and paying the bills (in addition to handling all of the other club finances.) Special thanks also to  the team of volunteers too numerous to mention here who served as leads and assistants for all of the sessions over the past 25 weeks. It has been a great run and we appreciate the support of everyone who helped make it happen!

General Meeting:         There will be a club general meeting on Thursday, May 14 at 6:00 p.m. at the Senior Center in the South Event Room. We will get reacquainted and discuss plans and operations for the summer season. Torches and pitchforks are optional. Please join us!

New members: We would like to extend a warm welcome to the following new members who have joined since March 5: Liz Dunn, Lawrence Faubert, Scott Martin, Sally Martin, Susan Massey, Nora Miller, Mark Morrison, Gregory Pierce, Nancy Pierce, Bill Randle, Sharon Ann Reed, Dianna Rose, David Sexton, Jeffrey Thompson, Liz Thompson, Kathy Trench, and Lorie Weber.  Welcome to Bend Pickleball Club and thank you for joining us!

Thanks for reading, and see you on the courts!!

Posted in Club News