Pickleball History and Origins – A Timeline

1989  The Villages, FL. built its first permanent courts.

1992  Pickle-Ball Inc. manufactured balls in-house with its custom drilling machine.

1997  Joel Pritchard passed away at age 72

1999  The first pickleball Internet Website (Pickleball Stuff) was launched, providing information and products

2000 The first Thousand Trails tournament was held at Pio Pico RV Resort, CA.

2002 The first National Championship Tournament was hosted by The Villages, FL.

2003 The second (and last) National Championship was hosted by The Villages, FL.

      • Pickleball was included for the first time in the Huntsman World Senior Games, held yearly in St. George, UT.
      • “39 Known Places to Play in North America” was listed on the Pickleball Stuff website. This represented 10 states, three Canadian provinces, and about 150 individual courts

2005 The USA Pickleball Association (USAPA) becomes a nonprofit corporation.

      • Steve Wong created the first USAPA Website
      • USAPA convinced several websites to discontinue their “Places to Play” links and consolidate all their entries into the USAPA database, thus creating a single, reliable source for players to find sites to play.

2006 Bill Bell passed away at age 83.

2008 The Rules Committee published The USA Pickleball Association Official Tournament Rulebook – Revision, May 1, 2008

      • Pickleball was included for the first time in the National Senior Games Association (NSGA)
      • 420 “Places to Play in North America” were listed on the USAPA website. This represented 43 states, four Canadian provinces, and about 1,500 individual courts. (This does not include many courts at private homes.)”
      • ABC’s “”Good Morning America” aired a segment about pickleball – the first mass media exposure of the sport.

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