Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Eyes have it. Tuesday P'ball - February 28, 2012

This candid photo of Carol was taken by Sharon. Carol was trying out her new glasses that she claims to have purchased at a 'real bargain' price. Lucky for the other players, she didn't wear them during the matches and therefore no one had to have mercy on her - including Johnny who hit her on the 'shoulder' with a mean overhand kill shot and who will be having super on his own tonight.

We had a near record crowd of 16 warm bodies. Here goes: Gene, Gary A, Mike, Jan, Anne,  Karen, Sharon, Joanie, Carol, Johnny, John,  Ralph, Steve, Bob H, Ray and Ron. 
We UPGers occupied 4 courts for a while and played many fine matches. Had very nice weather including some wind - but, we are used to that.
Enjoy the pictures. The camera that was partially submerged on Friday, February 24th (See Brain Delayed) almost still works as demonstrated by the attached photos. So, the UPG Photo Division is still in operation.

The Pickleball courts are ready and waiting for your best game. Bring it on.

Case Hardened

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Brain Delayed - February 24, 2012

Ok. So the weather looked a little threatening here and there. But, not necessarily at Gower Park. Four appeared at the courts: Steve, Peter, Gene and yon editor. We started game 1 at about the same time it started to drizzle. By the time we finished the match (13-11 in favor of Steve and Gene) it was a light rain w/ some puddling on the courts. Sometime during this match Carol and Johnny showed up to 'offer support'. Carol wisely stayed in the car. Johnny joined us for a few minutes without his paddle - a fairly clear indicator that he had no intention of bucking the weather. What weather?

Started game 2; same teams. Rain picked up. Puddles deadened some balls as they struck the court preventing them from bouncing high enough to be returned. Nice excuse factor, though. Heavier rain. "Let's finish the match."  Game 2 was won by S and J. again. Drat! Rain had stopped. "Let's play one more." Reluctantly, all agreed. We set up to begin the 3rd match and all at once heard a loud rushing noise that we soon discovered was a heavy rain squall smartly moving our way  (or: moving our way smartly - you choose) . Decided to end the match and the session, but not quit quick enough to avoid another drenching.

The seat of one of the canvas folding chairs we brought along filled with water partially submerging a camera cleverly placed their by it not-so-lucky owner/editor. That's the reason why there are no photos accompanying this posting.


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Pickleball Report - February, 21, 2012

Above: Joanie on the left. Anne (Pit Bull or Duchess) top right and Gene (call him Pop) below.

We had stragglers at the beginning of the session and some folks slipped away after an hour or so. But, we had 11 players for a period and a court-full stuck it out for about 2-1/2 hours. It was windy so each game was somewhat of a challenge - but, very sporting. Players in action: Mike, Steve (feeling punky with a cold, but tough, nevertheless), Gary (hit 'em into the top of the net) A, Gene ("call me Pop - that's what my kids call me."), Ron, Ray, Karen (ordering a paddle), Joanie, Anne, Ralph and Peter.

Below: Top L-R: Gary A, Peter; Bottom L-R: Pop/Spidy, Stevie Wonder.
That's it for now folks. That's all there is. There isn't any more.* See you on the courts - preferably when and if you are vertical.

Golden Spike

*Who said that after every curtain call? First correct answer gets an autographed Pickleball (your color choice - signed by the famous person's personal, unofficial, unauthorized representative.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

17 on the 17th. February 17, 2012 - P'ball

That's Anne and Ralph (Check Ralph's determined expression!)

We had a real crowd today - in fact, probably a record of some sort. The UPG statisticians are currently checking the official archives. A report may or may not follow. Anyway, the day was a beauty and it brought out a mob of players. Here they are: Johnny, Carol, Lynne, Ralph, Steve, Gary, Gary A., Anne, Gene*, Peter, Mike, John, Karen, Ray, Jan, Sharon and Ron. *Welcome to Gene. Today was his first time playing P'ball. He got the basics down pretty quickly, probably because of his tennis background. We played him hard, but he was able to get to his car unassisted after playing for two hours. That's a good thing.
With 17 players, we occupied 4 courts for the first time since moving our entire operation to Gower Park. It was quit a sight to see that much action. Many fine matches ensued. Action continued for almost 3 hours. By then the crowd was whittled down to 5, then 4 for two more rounds of it's "my last game."
Above: Clockwise from bottom left: Gene, Sharon/Steve, Gene/Gary A (foreground), Anne pouching/Ralph and ball on court.

Above: Gary A returning a serve.
Stay tuned to this BLOG and check your email early and often. You will be receiving important info about upcoming P'ball events.

Extruded RR Spike

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

ValDay P'ball - Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012

That's Steve's magic glove (Union made). He almost never loses while wearing it. But, he did today.

It being Valentine's Day we had a small gathering. The raw weather and light drizzle probably didn't help matters. Seven players: Steve, Gary A, Ray, John, Johnny, Peter and yon Editor - the only one to dress for the occasion (see certified, un-retouched photo below - a candid shot taken by Stevie Wonder). With 7 players we managed to keep 1-3/4s courts busy some of the time over a period of 2-1/2 hours.

Below: Clockwise from bottom left: John/Steve, Johnny, Peter and Gary A.

See you on the courts. The sooner the better. Bring your best game and if you can't do that - bring yummies.


Sunday, February 12, 2012

Friday P'ball - February 10, 2012

The day was a little chilly and raw, but 9 players were on hand and kept the courts smokin' for a good two hours. A little longer for the four who played on for a few more hotly contested matches. Players: Mike, Gary A, Bob H, Peter, Jan, Lynne, Sharon, Steve and Ron. That's Jan below - the star of this week's collage effort by the UPG Photography Division.
Watch for the P,ball schedule next week. Remember - the notice is only going to be posted once a week for our usual Tuesday and Friday events. Watch the weather and show yourself if you are inclined to play and the weather looks workable. Remember: We play in almost any weather, except during actual rain (as opposed to 'chances of rain'), hurricanes, blizzards and tornadoes.
See you on the quartz courts.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Pickleball Action - February 7, 2012

From bottom left clockwise: SpinDoctor John, Michigan Ken/Stevie Wonder and Rambo Gary A.

Fiurteen players arrived today: Ken and Susan visiting from Michigan, Joanie, Karen, Johnny and Carol (welcome back), Ray, Ralph, Mike, Steve, Gary A, Peter, John and yon editor Ron. Give me a jingle if that doesn't add up to 14. We also had one spectator and expert ball shagger - Susan's and Ken's granddaughter Vivian (?).

We promptly occupied 3 courts, moved players all over the place and had a barrel of fun with no notable injuries to report. It was slightly windy - no problems for we UPGers - but, a slight issue for S and K who only play indoors in one-or-the other of Michigan's peninsulas. But, they soldiered on.

So, nothing else to chronicle, because no one has made a fool of themselves lately.

Be thinking about this: Having an invitational p'ball event and inviting our pals from Fletcher, Lake Lure, Lake Keowee and Conestee for instance. Will take some serious planning and more than a few volunteers. Not an original idea. We've discussed it before. Now, we are coming into the season when a lot of Snowbirds  will be returning to their homes in the 'north'. Whadoya think?



Friday, February 3, 2012

Baker's Dozen - P'ball - February 3, 2012

Like silverfish, players came out of the woodwork today and we ended up with a baker's dozen. Present: Steve, Joanie, Anne, Lynne, Ron, Bob H., Mike, Peter, John*, Karen, Ray, and visitors Ken  and Susan.

Anne and John

*John returned to action after an almost 6 month hiatus after taking a fall the last time he played on August 12, 2011. The August 12 session marked John's 1st session w/ us in several months while recovering from a hip replacement. It was good to see John back in action.
Susan and Lynne 

Ken and Susan dropped in on us today shortly after arriving from Michigan to visit family in Greenville for a few weeks. They hadn't even taken up housekeeping yet and still had their dog in tow. But, they joined us in several matches and we enjoyed their visit. They've got their priorities in order! Susan was kind enough to leave a really nice windbreaker at the courts. Now, in safe hands.

So, with fine weather and a mob of players we occupied three courts and played on for almost 3 hours. As always the day ended with 4 players battling it out. Everyone was still standing at the end of the day. Thanks for that.


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Last day of balmy Jan. 1/31.2012

We had a very nice day. About 60 degrees, breezy and sunny. Plus: 10 players were on hand to battle it out, including Ralph who has been vacationing. The tally: Steve, Peter, Jan, Sharon, Joanie, Ron, Gary A, Ray, Ralph and Bob H.

Not much to report except that we played for about two and 1/2 hours and had a good time in the process. We even took time out to socialize, leaving 2 courts empty for more than a few minutes. To finish off the day the remaining 3 players played 3 Canadian Doubles matches. And, as most of you already know - and, we proved the point again - if you have 3 players of more or less of the same skill level and they are all on their game - the solo player has little chance of winning. That's the way it went, although Stevie Wonder held on but finally lost to Ron and Gary A - 11-7 - or, something like that.

There are some 2012 Pickleball events coming up as follows:

1. The Greater Greenville Senior Sports Classic - Greenville. April (date TBT)
2. Pickleball Expo. Pavilion Recreation Center - Monday, April 16 @ 6:00PM.
3. The State Games (SC Senior  Sports Classic) Florence, SC. - May (date TBT)

UPGers may want to participate in one or all of these events. If so, it should help promote the sport and may very well get more folks interested in the UPG.

Watch your email. Info will be forwarded as soon as it is received.

See you on the courts.