From beginner’s clinics to tournaments, the Trust for the National Mall and Humana turn the National Mall into a pickleball paradise from September 28 to October 1.
Pickleball pros, it’s your time to shine! The National Mall of Pickleball arrives this September 28 at the JFK Hockey Fields until Saturday September 30. To celebrate the growth of the game and the people who made it popular, Trust for the National Mall and Humana have set up three days worth of events for everyone in the DMV to enjoy.
If you don’t already know, pickleball is the hot sport that continues to gain popularity every month. What started out as a way to kill boredom, has turned into an official sport with not only a professional league, but others as well. It’s so popular in the District that nonprofit Washington DC Pickleball has over 600 members!
Nine pop-up courts will be set up at the JFK Hockey Fields for the three-day event. If you and your team want to play on one of these courts, you can pre-register for free community play. A walk-on court is also available. Equipment such as paddles and balls will be provided for all players.
“In an iconic open space where we play, work, dream, live, learn and connect. We’ll bring people together to celebrate the love for the game, its life-changing benefits and those who have popularized the sport: Seniors,” organizers of the National Mall of Pickleball, Trust for the National Mall and Humana said of the event.
The pop-up pickleball courts are the star of the whole weekend, but they aren’t the only stars that will be in DC for the event. A celebrity pickleball match will take place on Thursday with Rob Riggle as the emcee and Katie Couric as a player. Former White House Chef Andre Rush will also be there to teach players about which meals and snacks can power players up.
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Feeling on the fence about attending because you don’t know how to play? Don’t worry, because whether you’re new to the sport or take your pickleball seriously, players from D.C. Pickleball Team will be holding lessons for anyone who wants to sign up. The beginner clinics will focus on the foundations of the game such as rules and how to serve, volley and score. The intermediate and advanced clinics will focus more so on technique, court positioning, third shot drops/drives and dinking on the move.
The event itself is meant to promote healthy living for older generations, but all ages are welcome. Anyone and everyone can be a part of the pickleball celebrations this weekend, so don’t let your skill level keep you from having a good time on the Mall. The best part about pickleball is that it’s welcoming to everyone.
“You can show up at the courts with a partner, as part of a league, or on your own,” organizers said. “After an introduction and friendly tap of the paddles, you’ll have a great time and walk away with new connections.”
In the words of Wendy Williams, pickleball is the moment. So, lace up your sneakers, check out the full schedule of events and join in on the fun starting this Thursday at the National Mall!
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