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Archive for "Hobbies"

Pickleball Events

Posted on September 11, 2019 by under Hobbies.    

Our little pickleball Facebook group has grown so much in the last few months. We started it in January of this year with just a handful of people and now we have over 500 members. It’s actually grown much bigger than the Wichita Zumba Facebook group that has been around for over four years. It’s pretty amazing.

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Over Labor Day weekend, a bunch of pickleball peeps decided to have an impromptu cookout at Seneca Park. I was surprised by the awesome turnout.

I actually hadn’t planned on going. I had a full day of teaching Zumba classes that Sunday and then afterwards helped move exercise equipment at South YMCA for an hour. The park is on my way home so I told Brian I would just swing by to play a couple of games and see what was up.

Well, everyone came and even brought kids and spouses. It turned into a real party. I called Brian and begged him to come out. He went to the store and grabbed some hotdogs and buns and some condiments from our fridge (which we didn’t really need to bring because there were plenty of condiments there). I ended up going home to drop of my car and we rode back together (that way we only had one car and also so I could drink and not have to worry about driving home after).

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There are several fun pickleball events coming up but there are two in particular that I’ve been looking forward to: the Franklin Pickleball Masters Tournament at Chicken N Pickle and the Bob Jackson Friendship Tournament at Edgemoor Park. I’ll be a spectator at the former and I’ll be a participant in the latter.

I’m so excited about the Franklin Pickleball Masters that I actually purchased a weekend VIP pass for me and Brian, complete with court-side championship seats. I also subbed out all of my Zumba classes for the weekend so that we can spend as much time as we can watching the games all weekend long.

The Franklin Pickleball Masters is an invite-only event so there will be some heavy hitters participating. I am looking forward to meeting them all and, hopefully, getting their signatures on my pickleball paddle.

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Here are the match-ups for mixed doubles. There are some really amazing teams but I have to cheer for the home team: Matt and Lucy. They live in Wichita but are nationally acclaimed.

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As for the women’s doubles, Simone and Lucy (two of the best in the nation, perhaps even the world) are playing together so that’s going to be really fun to watch. The Kyle and Matt team up in men’s doubles is another one that will be fun to watch as well. I am so excited for next weekend!

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Then I will play in the Bob Jackson Friendship Tournament the following weekend. It’s part of a series of tournaments the group is hosting to raise money for lights at the Edgemoor Park pickleball courts. Kathy, Gregg, and the rest of the gang have been selling t-shirts like crazy (I have bought several myself, actually) to raise money for lights. We are hoping to meet this goal next year. It will be nice to finally have lights out there. It will extend our play times considerably.

Anyway, that’s all for now. I joined a pickleball league at Chicken N Pickle (my first ever) and tonight is our first night of play. Until next time. GNG.

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Pickleball Outing

Posted on September 7, 2019 by under Food and Drink, Hobbies.    

All of my Zumba classes ended up being canceled on the weekend of the cancer crawl, so I went from being super busy on Sunday to being super available. I checked with my friends/coworkers visiting from Topeka if they wanted to do brunch before heading back but they already ate at their hotel. Next, I checked with my pickleball friends to see if people were playing anywhere.

As luck would have it, Bill and Trixie already planned to visit Jeanie in El Dorado. Michael and I decided to tag along. It was my first official pickleball road trip and it was a ton of fun!

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From left: Bill, Jeanie, Michael, and Trixie.

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Jeanie is our pickleball friend we were visiting who lives in El Dorado. Bill, Trixie, and I carpooled over to the El Dorado Activity Center where they play from 2-5 PM on Sundays. It was great to be able to carpool because it made the hour-long trip go so much faster. We had great conversations on the way there and back.

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We were famished after playing for three hours so we decided to grab dinner together. Jeanie recommended Fiesta Mexicana Cantina in downtown El Dorado.

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Here are some food pics…

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The food was portions were generous, prices reasonable, and food delicious! This is another one of those restaurants that I can wait to go revisit with Brian.

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While we were there, we ran into a local couple who we played with that afternoon so we all ended up dining together. We had a lovely time eating and visiting.

I don’t know when I’ll be able to play with the fun El Dorado group again because I normally teach Zumba on Sundays until 3 PM but I really appreciated having a free Sunday. I’m glad I took advantage of the opportunity to check out their open play. Everyone was super nice and welcoming.

For now, I’m back to my normal Sunday schedule:

  • 10:30 AM Aqua Zumba at South YMCA
  • 12:00 PM Aqua Zumba at North YMCA (on hold during the month of September due to pool remodel — will resume again in October)
  • 2:00 PM Zumba at Andover YMCA

I don’t foresee myself making it back to El Dorado on a typical Sunday but I do hope to squeeze in some pickleball play at either Seneca Park or Chicken N Pickle on some Sundays (barring any staff meetings at the Y or VASA, which are typically on Sunday afternoon/evening).

I am so grateful I get to indulge in my favorite pastimes and making new friends along the way. Until next time. GNG.

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Wichita Corporate Challenge

Posted on September 1, 2019 by under Events, Hobbies.    

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We didn’t do so hot on the Wichita Corporate Challenge this year but I got to play pickleball and had a ton of fun!

cornhole team Pickle Ball

I got to hang out with these fabulous people (from left: Jeremy, Frank, Tara, and Abby; below: my partner, Chris) for an afternoon, met some people from Pickleball Connection in real life, and made some new friends.

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One of the players I met at the event that day invited me to be on her team for a pickleball league at Chicken N Pickle. It just so happened that my Wednesday night Aqua Zumba class was ending and I would have Wednesday nights free. Anyway, the stars aligned because I’d not found a league that worked with my schedule until then. I decided to join at the very moment and now we’re on a team together. I am super excited to play in my first ever pickleball league. I hope it helps me improve my game. If nothing else, at least I’ll have something to do on Wednesday nights.

I just love how Pickleball Connection brings people together.

Speaking of Pickleball Connection, it’s amazing to me how a group we started on January 19 with just a handful of people has grown to almost 500. It’s actually much bigger than the Wichita Zumba group now. How awesome is that?

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Pickle Ball

Posted on December 10, 2018 by under Hobbies.    

Brian and I made some new friends at pickle ball. This is the Thursday night crew.

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One of them, Shelby, turned out to be the mom of one of my Zumba friends, Katie. What a small world!

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In case you didn’t know, pickle ball is our newest hobby. We started a couple of months ago. It’s our new Sunday night thing since we skipped the fall league season and aren’t bowling this year.

I really like pickle ball because it’s so much more active than bowling and it helps me burn more calories. I’m hoping that we continue to keep it up throughout the new year. Until next time! GNG.

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I Don’t Know Why I Do This To Myself

Posted on July 7, 2018 by under Dreams, Hobbies.    

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A few months ago I signed up for a couple of 5Ks on whim. I don’t know why. I’m not a runner. I mean, I dream of someday being someone who enjoys running but I truly and honestly suck at it. I don’t have the attention span, nor do I have the determination to run for longer than a couple of minutes.

I had a 10K running app on my phone that I was doing for a while last year but then I just kind of fell off and haven’t gotten back on it. I was doing pretty well too but, since I haven’t been doing it, I have to work back up to where I was. With running, it seems like I’m constantly starting over.

Anyway, I joke that I have no idea why I signed up for these 5Ks. I actually signed up for the KMUW one because I love NPR and KMUW is my favorite radio station (and Brian’s too). We both listen to the station all the time. It’s about the only station we listen to on FM radio these days.

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Here’s a picture of my finisher medal. I was so slow that, even though the race started at eight o’clock in the morning, I was actually concerned that I might not make my 10:30 AM Zumba class. I felt so bad for Brian who had to wait for me at the end. He had to wait for almost an hour. Yikes!

Oh, it didn’t help that I started having knee issues leading up to this event. Although, I think it was my body’s way of revolting for my stupid decisions like signing up for 5Ks even though I’m not a runner.

The KMUW run was on May 19. The same day as Logan’s graduation party. That was kind of a hectic day. We got up early and were downtown by seven-ish for the race then I had to teach my Zumba class then Logan’s graduation party then we were back downtown again for Zumba in the Square.

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It was the first one of 2018 and it was a great turn out. I didn’t end up leading any songs at the event because we knew we would be coming from Logan’s graduation party and we weren’t sure what time we would be able to get away.

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Fast forward to the Diva Dask 5K, which my friend Sarah posted about shortly after I’d signed up for the KMUW. It’s a fun run that benefits Girls On the Run. Since I easily get talked into things, I signed up for that one as well. Never mind that I haven’t been running at all and I suck at it. I’m such a joiner!

I could blame peer pressure but it wasn’t even that. I’m just an easy target.

I knew some people at the KMUW race but I was pretty much doing it alone. Diva Dash was the first race that I’d ever done with a group of people. I didn’t get our official group shirt. I should have so I can remember this day forever. I hate running but Diva Dash was actually a lot of fun.

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I did only a smidge better than the KMUW 5K so I was still super slow. But I didn’t die and I had a blast hanging out with my Zumba besties. Incidentally, we called our team “Zumba Divas” — super fitting, right?

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This is embarrassing but I’m posting it anyway just so you get the idea of how badly I suck at running. I would say I’m as slow as molasses but I think I’m probably even slower. LOL. But, hey, it was for a good cause and it was fun.

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Brynden got third place in her age group without even trying. Maybe she tried but she made it look so easy. Her mom Laurie did really awesome also. She got sixth in her age group, which is my same age group. She was one of the fastest and I was one of the slowest. Ugh. Thinking about it makes me sad so we’re moving on.

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Here’s a group photo of us with some princesses.

The craziest part about the races is that, besides not being a runner and completely sucking at running, I had so many excuses not to sign up. When I signed up for both of these events, the summer schedule hadn’t started so I completely forgot about my Aqua Zumba class. It wouldn’t have been a problem if I could run faster but there was no way I could complete the run and make it to Andover YMCA to teach my 8:45 AM class. Thankfully, my friend Eleanor was available to sub.

After the fact, I joked that I should have found a sub for the running and just stuck to teaching my class after I realized I had a schedule conflict because I’m actually better at Zumba. LOL. Speaking of, this is one of my life’s biggest mysteries. I don’t understand how I can do Zumba for hours on end and be unfazed and I cannot stomach two minutes of running.

Anyway, I’m pretty sure I’ve cured myself of my running delusion for the time being. There should be no 5Ks or any type of running events in my future for a good long while. If I get any crazy ideas, I hope someone smacks me and talks sense into me so I don’t get myself in the same situation again.

I had fun and I didn’t die so I guess there’s that. GNG.

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