AHS Key Club plans pickleball tournament, seeks sponsors

Published 11:00 am Friday, January 26, 2024

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The Andalusia High School Key Club will host its first annual “Big Dill Pickleball Tournament” at the Kiwanis Building on Saturday, Feb. 10, with doors opening at 9 a.m.

Registration forms are located in the AHS office, Town and Country, and The Floor Store. The cost to participate is $30 and includes two t-shirts, a goody bag, and a guaranteed three games. Participants must provide their own paddles. The deadline to register is Thursday, Feb. 1, for those who would like a t-shirt. Sponsorships are needed with forms available in the school office.

“We are raising money for charities and events around Andalusia as well as the opportunity for students and our Key Club members to go to the district convention,” Key Club Sponsor Candy Parker said. “We will have a full-on tournament where teams can be two men, two women, or co-ed. The tournament will begin with a round-robin tournament and the championship in the afternoon for those who win that round-robin.”

The Key Club is a student-led organization where officers make decisions about activities and projects. The tournament will have three teams: male, female, and co-ed. Concessions will be available for purchase at the event.

“They chose the pickleball tournament as a fundraiser and a chance to offer something new to the community. It’s also a leadership development program sponsored by the Kiwanis Club. They are amazing and do so much to help our students by helping us with financial needs and giving us lots of opportunities to serve, lead, and be a part of things with the community,” Parker added.

Andalusia High School re-chartered Key Club during the 2022-2023 school year.

“I had heard great things about Key Club and was excited at the prospect of being in such a well-rounded club. I was elected as vice president my junior year and became president my senior year. I have the privilege of leading a great group of people and enjoy every second of it,” senior John Logan Long said.

Long said the idea to hold a pickleball tournament was discussed at an officer meeting.

“Pickleball is a universal sport that anyone can play and have a good time, so we figured it would be the perfect idea for a fundraiser. We slowly put the pieces together and are expecting a big turnout and a fun-filled day. I am looking forward to playing with and against my friends and seeing everyone’s hard work paying off.”

Long’s involvement in the Key Club gives him opportunities to serve the community.

“Growing up in this amazing community has made me the person I am today, so I do everything I can to give back to it. Key Club has also taught me many valuable leadership skills and has helped me to learn problem-solving skills. I hope to have a good time with my friends and take home a trophy. My friends and I have struck a good balance of having fun while maintaining a competitive side,” he said.

He was first introduced to the sport during spring break in Gulf Shores.

“I like how easy it is to learn the rules and play. Pickleball doesn’t require a tremendous amount of skill like other sports and can be played by all ages due to its relaxed nature. It also creates the perfect camaraderie with friends. I hope everyone, experienced Pickleball players or not, will sign up and join us at the Kiwanis building. See you there and be ready to play,” Long said.

For more information email parkerc@andalusia.k12.al.us or johnloganlong2006@gmail.com.