Home Blog Celebrity Pickleball tournament to raise funding for new courts – Portsmouth Daily Times

Celebrity Pickleball tournament to raise funding for new courts – Portsmouth Daily Times


The Portsmouth Pickleball Club only recently set out to renovate the pickleball and tennis courts at Mound Park, a place they call home and play regularly. The mission was determined to be an important, but serious, undertaking with a budget of $172,154. Despite the decision being recent, the group has been working with the powerful force of a large club of influential community champions, reaching their halfway goal and securing an upcoming date to break ground on the first half of development, with a total of $84,955.30 raised in two months.
They’ve made serious efforts, organizing a fundraiser that brought in $5,000, running a donation campaign, and seeking support from the City of Portsmouth. They now pivot their attention to a major fundraiser they think will bring in a lot of support and attention: a celebrity pickleball tournament.
There are a dozen teams playing for the title of victor and the coveted role of People’s Choice.
The celebrities are each paired with a Portsmouth Pickleball Club member. The teams include Steve Hayes and Beth Haney, Megan Baum and Amanda Rhea, Jared Brankamp and Brittany Blacker, Gerald Cadogan and Cara Dobbins, Mike Glockner and Steve Fitzer, Tanner Hatcher and Amy Hassel, Dr. Amy Heim and Chris Day, Asa Jewett and Richie Purdy, Josh Morris and Ronnie Williams, Bill Shope and Mike Mershon, Steve Sturgill and Mimi Clausing, Wendi Waugh and Randy Smith.
“I’m looking forward to it. I think it is going to be great and everybody is going to have fun. We’ve had some of the celebrities showing up and I think some may stick with Pickleball when this is over,” Chairman Randy Smith said. “We’ve been giving instruction and playing games. Overall, I think they’ve really enjoyed it. I hope we get a good turnout with community members. I think it will make for a good morning.”
Smith has been organizing the event as a loyal member of the club. He is looking forward to the new courts and says that they’re very important.
“I think they’re utmost important. Many have seen the courts, with the cracks and weeds and color,” Smith said. “The protective coating has faded, and it makes for a slippery court. It is going to be a great addition to Mound Park.”
The contractor has already begun working on half the project, as they’ve met their halfway goal. The new courts should be ready soon and phase two will kick off.
“I’m really happy. It’s happening really fast; faster than I thought it would. My wife and I keep watching the bank account growing and growing and it makes us very happy,” PPC’s Richie Purdy said. “We’ve had great support. Everyone I talk to and see. People come up to me all the time asking how things are going and other people are coming up to me and asking how to give and support our mission.”
Purdy is excited to get the courts complete and believes it will have a big impact on the community.
“I think they’re going to be huge. I even talk with the neighbors across the street, and they’re really excited about it,” Purdy said. “I want everyone in the community to know that this isn’t just for us; it is for everyone. If kids want to come play, anyone at all; everyone is welcome. Plus, this is really going to help the park and make everything look good.”
The PPC Celebrity Pickleball Tournament will be on October 21, 9 a.m., in Mound Park. Admission to the tournament is free, but welcome donations to go towards the court development. To make a donation to the PPC project, message Mound Park Pickleball on Facebook, call 740.464.4501, or email [email protected]
Reach Joseph Pratt at (740) 353-3101, by email at [email protected], © 2023 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.
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