Copake scores with inaugural pickleball tournament

Sixty-four teams competed on all four pickleball courts at Copake Memorial Park on Saturday, June 1.

John Coston

Copake scores with inaugural pickleball tournament

COPAKE — Teams of pickleball players converged in this rural hamlet on Saturday, June 1 for a daylong inaugural tournament.

Organized by the Copake Economic Development Advisory Committee (CEDAC), the tournament drew 64 teams that faced off in morning and afternoon play on four town courts in Copake Memorial Park.

Pickleball has been around for decades, starting with ping pong paddles and a perforated plastic ball in the 1960s, and by the 1990s was being played in all 50 states, according to USA Pickleball, its governing body.

Jayne McLaughlin, a USA Pickleball Volunteer Ambassador, was on hand Saturday to answer questions and advise on rules.

Players came from as far away as Lanesville, Massachusettes, north of Boston. Many others drove up to Columbia County from as far south as Poughkeepsie and from across the Hudson in Woodstock.

Pickleball’s popularity continues to grow, and credit is given to communities that support the sport, which also is popular among retirees.

Richard Wolfe, supervisor of the Town of Copake, pointed to the newly installed four courts the town built.

“In the winter we flood the courts and we have ice-skating,” he said.

Watching from the sidelines. Photo by John Coston

CEDAC steering committee spokesperson Vicki Sander said 18 volunteers helped organize and manage Saturday’s tournament, including other steering committee members Signe Adam, Art Boniati and Rob Lazarus, who thanked CEDAC member Bill Boris-Schacter for helping make the event a success. Ten local businesses also sponsored the event: Broadway Plumbing, Copake Boat and Ski, The Greens at Copake Country Club, Herrington’s Hardware, High Voltage, Inc., Hillsdale House, Key Bank, Kneller Insurance, Moore-Bridger Tree Service and Robert Patterson, CPA.

Strong sun and a light breeze made for a summery feel. Players dinked away and drove home some hard winners as family, friends and other players watched from lawn chairs. An Aloha Tacos truck provided a much needed food break in between matches.

Organizers fielded 32 teams in the morning and 32 in the afternoon. Winners announced in three divisions of play were:

  1. Division One: First Place Todd Proper, Hillsdale; Oliver Correa, Craryville
    2nd Place Susan Kaiser, Red Hook; Laurie Vosburgh, Rhinebeck
    3rd Place Ivan Taub, Claverack; Bruce Leder,Claverack
  2. Division Two: First Place Matt Jankowski, Olivebridge ;Tom Hubbel, Kingston
    2nd Place Jennifer Carpino, Hurley; Ann Lord, Hurley
    3rd Place Jesse Feldmus, Rhinebeck; Courtney Hannaford, Rhinebeck
  3. Division Three: First place Brad Quick, Staatsburg; Daniel Berthold,Rhinebeck
    2nd Place Tuck Voller, Lee, MA; Norma Comalli, Lee
    3rd Place Robert Coco, Pittsfield MA; Carolyn Coco, Pittsfield MA

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