The Springfield Thunderbirds, in partnership with Joola Pickleball, are pleased to announce that the team will be hosting its first-ever Pickleball Palooza at the MassMutual Center Exhibition Hall from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m., just before the T-Birds' 7:05 p.m. game against the Laval Rocket.
Players of all ages and ability levels are encouraged to participate in this first-of-its-kind event. The T-Birds will be hosting an afternoon of open play inside the Exhibition Hall, with a range of playing courts divided into three skill groups: beginner, intermediate, and competitive.
"As an organization, we are always trying to stay up to date with the latest trends, and the universal love for the sport of pickleball made this idea especially intriguing to us," said Thunderbirds President Nathan Costa. “When we had the chance to work with the Happy Pickleball team and also provide an amazing T-Birds’ branded paddle with the most-known brand in the industry – Joola – as part of this unique event, it was a no-brainer.”
The event will precede the T-Birds' contest against the Laval Rocket, which drops the puck at 7:05 p.m. at the MassMutual Center. For $65, players receive:
- Open Court admission for play
- T-Birds game ticket for Saturday, March 2 (Defense Zone)
- T-Birds branded Joola Journey Pickleball paddle ($70 value)
"We are excited to be partnering with the Springfield Thunderbirds for their Pickleball Palooza and know the fans are going to love these unique commemorative paddles," said Gordon Kaye, Chief Experience Officer with Joola Pickleball. We know the Thunderbirds are going to deliver a fantastic experience to their fans and look forward to being part of this event for many years to come."
In addition to the gift of T-Birds paddles, novice players looking to try out the sport for the first time will have the chance to learn the basics of the game from Happy Pickleball.
"Somebody who loved playing the game showed it to me," said Todd "Happy" Boynton of Happy Pickleball. "I (Happy) loved playing, so he showed it to Andrew. Andrew loves playing, so he'll show it to the next person, and so on. Pickleball Palooza is just that concept but on steroids. There are a whole bunch of people who love it, and we hope to teach it to a lot of new players."
Interested Pickleball Palooza participants can sign up online by filling out the below form or by calling Andrew Buchanan of the Thunderbirds' front office at (413) 417-2284.