April 10, 2022


In this week's blast:


    We were recently presented with a unique opportunity to provide support to Oak Creek Elementary School in Harrison School District 2. The gym teacher there, Ms. Emily Rikli, contacted us via our website requesting assistance with the pickleball program she has started for her 4th & 5th graders. In her email Ms. Rikli told me that she has been searching for an activity that would get all her students engaged and interested in participating in gym class. She tried basketball, but that resulted in some students just standing around the walls of the gym watching. She decided to give pickleball a try.

    This turned out to be the one sport where she could get maximum interest and participation from all her students. She told me that all of the students are really enjoying pickleball. They come up with really fun team names and play very competitively. She holds mini tournaments for them on their three courts. Her pickleball program has positively impacted the entire school.

    Unfortunately, like many stories you have probably seen or read of late, funding for some of the programs our teachers want to engage their students in is not readily available. Ms. Rikli's students were using wooden paddles that were not designed for pickleball and were extremely old, heavy, and worn. Some students even got splinters in their hands from the wooden paddles.  Schools like Oak Creek Elementary just don't have the budget for things like this. Many teachers, including Ms. Rikli, are forced to think out of the box or fund these initiatives on their own.

    Ms. Rikli needed funding for her program and, fortunately, she came to the right place. I contacted a couple of our sponsors and was able to not only procure funding for her program but also provide her and her students with some paddles right away for them to play with.

    I would like to give a big thanks and shout out to Mr. Bradley Harvey, of Harvey Investments, who, when I reached out to him, was more than happy to assist. He wrote a check to fund her program and provided a couple of paddles that he had laying around the house. Scheels Sporting Goods also provided a couple of sets of paddles. I was even able to secure four more brand new Selkirk Paddles as a part of their initiative to provide 8000 paddles to programs just like Ms. Rikli's around the country.

    When Ms. Rikli informed her class that I was working on this for them, one student asked her, "so we are going to be able to play with real paddles?" I was able to go by the school on Thursday and present her with everything that I collected for their program. Ms. Rikli and her school Principal, Ms. Linda Donaldson, truly appreciated that we took the time to meet their need. I have included a slide show comprised of some of the pictures from the experience. To view it click here.

    Being able to assist schools and programs with this type of genuine need is/was so rewarding. Ms. Rikli will be setting up an after school pickleball club in the fall for her students and the school.

    Oak Creek Elementary School could always use more paddles, so if you happen to have any used paddles laying around the house or in your pickleball bag, I would be glad to collect them from you to take to the school. If you see me at Monument Valley Park or the Bear Creek courts and you have a paddle that you would like to donate, I would be glad to get it from you. Also, if you play at Venezia Park and you would like to donate a used paddle or two, please just email me or reach out via info@pikespeakpickleball.com and I will come pick them up.


    Joe Johnson

    President, PPPA


    APRIL is nomination month for PPPA Board positions.  This being an even year, President, Treasurer, and Special Projects Director are open for nomination.  Each Board position is a 2-year term beginning on July 1. Incumbents having served only one term are eligible to run for a second term.

    • As a reminder, elections for Vice President, Secretary, Education and Training Director and Membership Director are conducted during odd years, so watch for these positions to open in 2023.

    You may nominate yourself or another member. Nominees must be current, active members of PPPA and in good standing.  If you are nominating another member, please ensure that they are aware of and have agreed to be nominated.  Please send your nomination via email to Wendy Venturella, Nomination Committee Chairperson, at wendyv80132@gmail.com no later than May 1, 2022.

    The Nomination Committee will contact each nominee and ask for a written paragraph regarding experience and qualifications.  Each nominee will also be asked to answer a few questions to help the membership learn more about the candidate, so they can make informed decisions. 

    • Elected Officers and Directors of PPPA have a responsibility to avoid financial and organizational conflicts of interest that impact their objectivity, or appearance thereof, in the conduct of their roles as Association Board Members.  In accordance with “best practices” of the National Council for Nonprofits, the Principles & Practices for Nonprofit Excellence in Colorado, and the established policy of PPPA; each new or re-elected Board member will need to review and sign their individual annual Conflict of Interest disclosure in June of each year (see PPPA Policy 6, Part 1 & Part 2).

    On the second Sunday in May (May 8, 2022), a complete ballot with job descriptions, nominee names, experience and qualifications will be sent to all current PPPA members with a listed email address. If you share your email address with another member (not recommended) you will have ONE vote from that address. To review or update the email you have on file, please log into your account, click on your name in the upper right section of the page, click [Edit profile], review and make changes, then [Save]. Votes are due on or before Sunday May 15, 2022.  Election results will be announced to members via email, in early June. 

    Not ready to be a Board Member, but still want to get involved?  Consider getting involved with one of these special committees:

    • Tournament Committee
    • Fundraising Committee
    • Finance Committee
    • Silent Auction Committee
    • Referee Committee
    • Percent of Sales Committee

      Our association has 1326 active members – WOW, that’s a lot of pickleball!  New and expanded programs can only be offered through volunteers, so your help is appreciated.

      Thank you for your continued support and participation in this election cycle.

      Sharon Kumpf
      PPPA Membership Director


      Please Click on Balloon


      Looking for gifts for yourself or pickleball loving family members or friends? Look no further! We have restocked our shelves and PPPA logo merchandise is now on sale with most sizes and colors of tee shirts, pullovers, hats and visors currently available in limited supplies online at the PPPA Store (pikespeakpickleball.com). Simply go to the website, click on the “Store” link, and follow the prompts to search for available colors, sizes, and styles.

      Payment can be made through PayPal or with your own credit card. Your purchase will be mailed to you for an additional charge, or you may choose to pick up your item(s). Pick up instructions will appear on your confirmation if you choose this option. Supplies are limited so log on and shop today!

      Erica Roberts, Merchandise Manager


      Save 5% and 5% comes back to PPPA in an annual Pickleball Central gift card!

      Interested in saving 5% on pickleball gear, clothing and training aids?  PPPA is now enrolled in Pickleball Central’s Club Rewards program.  Here are the details for you and PPPA to benefit from:

      When purchasing any items from www.PickleballCentral.com, enter CRPikes and you will receive an automatic 5% DISCOUNT and PPPA will earn 5% of every purchase that uses the code in an end-of-the-year gift card to purchase anything that PPPA needs – balls, extra paddles, nets, whatever we need!    (The code is not case sensitive.)

      Here's more about the ClubRewards program.


      Do you shop online on Amazon.com? Do your friends and family shop online on Amazon.com? Switch to AmazonSmile and PPPA will receive a small percent of every transaction! It adds up!

      (AmazonSmile is operated by Amazon as their way to give back to charitable organizations)

      PPPA is now enrolled in the AmazonSmile program. AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same shopping features as on Amazon.com.

      Go to smile.amazon.com and select Pikes Peak Pickleball Association from the list as your designated charity. Once you select PPPA, 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchase will be donated to PPPA. Spread the word to family and friends for them to designate PPPA as their charitable organization on AmazonSmile too!

      In order for PPPA to receive funds from your purchases, you must always go through smile.amazon.com when preparing to shop online.


      Did you know that you can earn $$$ for PPPA with every dollar you spend when you shop at King Soopers or City Market? Friends and Family can help PPPA earn money too!

      See this flyer for information and how you can sign up.

      © , "PPPA" is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Colorado Springs, CO
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