I hope this email finds you healthy, warm and ready to enjoy the special memories the Christmas season always seems to deliver.
New Schedule: As of December 20th our membership has grown to 160, including forty-one new members. I'm anticipating we will pick up another 30-50 players by mid-January! To provide court access for as many as possible, we are again revising the weekly schedule effective Sunday, January 2nd. A copy of the new schedule is attached and is also viewable on our website. I recommend you keep a printed copy on hand until the new routine becomes familiar. Highlights:
- Mixed doubles: Sunday and Tuesday evening mixed-doubles will be just one 90-minute session that starts at 6:30 PM. Note: the mixed doubles events were quite popular last year. If that again proves to be the case, we may need to limit participation to one night per week. For now, however, you can sign up for both mixed doubles sessions if you'd like. The link is: Silveridge Pickleball Members: Sunday's Court Bookings (signupgenius.com)
- Thursday evenings: Rather than another session of mixed doubles, we are going to give players across a range of skill levels the opportunity to mix it up in a round robin format. Group level 1.0 to 3.0 will play from 6:00 PM until 7:15 PM one week and from 7:15 PM until 8:30 PM the next. Group level 3.0 to 4.0 (3.0’s can sign up for the early or late time slot, but not both) will play at the opposite time.
- Men’s League: (Wednesdays) has been under-utilized to date so we have divided the evening into two play times based on skill level (1.0-2.5 and 3.0-4.0). Each week the groups will rotate the start time of either 6:00 or 7:15 pm. Some evenings players will just form their own games similar to the process used at All-Play events. Other evenings we are planning to hold some mini-tournaments! Come check it out.
- Round Robin Play- Beginning in January there will now be FOUR sessions per week for each skill level in order to accommodate everyone who enjoys the round-robin format. Club members must use SignUpGenius (SUG) to sign up and may only register in advance for three sessions per week. Exception: If a session is not full 90 minutes before the start of play, a Club member already registered for three sessions that same week may also register for the open spot. It is vital that members use SUG to sign up for a round robin and promptly remove your name if you develop a conflict so that others can fill your spot. Persons who habitually violate this policy could face a temporary suspension of their round robin playing privileges.
Happenings: The December 11th Christmas Social was well attended! We have lots more fun stuff planned in the months ahead including a club-member only tournament, a skills challenge, our annual meeting, a "Pickleball Olympics" event, and plenty of skills and drills clinics. You will receive an invite for your level-specific clinic from SUG and should also periodically check the clinic schedule posted on the bulletin board near court #3. Thank you to all the club members who have volunteered to instruct at past and upcoming clinics.
A few upcoming dates to remember:
|January 8||Club Expo and Basket Raffle Event|
|January 15||Fun Pickleball Social Event|
|February 12||All Levels Tournament|
|February 19||Pickleball Olympics|
|March 5||Fun Pickleball Social Event|
|March 5||Annual General Meeting|
Dates and events are subject to changes or cancellation
Tee-shirts and Basket Raffles: We will again be taking orders for Silveridge Pickleball Club shirts on January 8 and 15th. Samples will be available to try on to determine your ideal size. More basket raffles are being planned. All proceeds benefit your Club!
New Clock: How do you like the new Countdown Clock? I understand you can see it at night from Highway 60! As I mentioned in my last newsletter, the clock was funded via a gift from the Renter's Association which only costs $5 per household to join. Please do so - there is something on every one of their monthly agendas that benefits you either directly or indirectly.
Round Robin Captains: Covid-19 postponed last year’s plan to have at least two “captains” in place for each skill level. But this season we again have the numbers to initiate what we anticipate will be a long-term system for insuring that round-robin play runs as smoothly as possible for all levels. To accomplish that objective, the Executive Committee selected players per skill level from the lengthy list of those who volunteered when they filled out their membership application. A list of those individuals names and lot numbers will be posted on the bulletin board by Court #3 by early January. Please help them out if asked. Their primary responsibilities are to make sure the courts are free of debris, to organize each round robin session, to run the countdown clock, to call off play if there is inclement weather, and to know how to respond to injuries or other concerns that arise. They also will serve as a resource whenever a player seeks a review of their skill level. (See next paragraph).
Changing Skill Levels: How are players assigned skill levels for round robin competitions? That is an oft-posed question. Initially, you start out at whatever skill level you noted on your membership application. Of course, many players (especially players new to Silveridge) have no idea what to put on that form and will inadvertently underestimate or overestimate their abilities. If so, the poor fit is usually self-evident after several competitions and a reassignment can quickly be made. But what about those situations where the initial skill level is appropriate but due to frequent play, practice and improvement you believe it is time to step up a level? First, make your wishes known to one of your round robin captains. They will then pay particular attention to you for the next several sessions - Are your skills better than the majority of your peers? How consistent are you from shot to shot, game to game? Are you winning almost all your matches? Are you winning irrespective of who you're partnered with? Do you have a weakness that will be easily exploited if you move up a skill level? After several competitions your captains can provide their opinion as to whether you have the requisite skills to move up or you could use a little more improvement. Bear in mind there is no “test” that can be taken. All the captains can do is watch and then offer their honest opinion, so please don't harbor resentment if they feel you should stay with your current group for the time being. If you strongly disagree with their assessment, give me or another board member a call and we can consider (a) moving you up a level for a day or two to see how you fit in or (b) arrange a game for you with several higher level players who can re-assess your skills and provide a second opinion.
I trust you are as enthused as I am to try out the new schedule and the activities planned for the next several months - and on that note will close by repeating my wish for a Most Very Merry Christmas as well as a pickleball filled New Year!
2021/2022 Club President