Nude pickleball takes over Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay nudists have been working on their groundstroke.
State of play: Pickleball — that mash-up of tennis, badminton and ping-pong — has exploded in popularity lately.
- Pickleball participation grew by 21.3% between 2019 and 2020, prompting the Economist to declare it "the fastest growing sport in America," as Axios Sports Kendall Baker reports.
- And demand for courts is exploding, with cities building new facilities and private clubs opening new courts all over.
The rub: It only makes sense, then, that the sport would also be growing in popularity among those who call Tampa Bay's nudist communities home.
- Clothing-optional resorts are advertising their pickleball facilities, holding tournaments, and putting in more courts to meet the demand.
- "Nude pickleball is beating the pants off its competition," wrote Frank Cerabino for Pickler, a pickleball news and information website and newsletter, in a story headlined "Nude pickleball is taking off."
Zoom in: At Caliente Club and Resorts in Land O' Lakes, the popular Nightfall Pickleball is held every Monday at 5pm. "Grab your balls!" the flyer says. "It's time for pickleball!"
- Pickleball popularity has grown so much at clothing-optional Eden RV Resort in Hudson that they're getting rid of the shuffleboard court to add another pickleball court.
What they're saying: "We tell people, just bring your tennis shoes," Mike Sullivan, a USA Pickleball ambassador and a resident of Cypress Cove Nudist Resort in Kissimmee, told Pickler.
Yes, butt: "All of them balls in play could be confusing!" someone called Two Bills posted on the Talk of the Villages message board.
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