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Kimberly’s Birthday

Posted on July 31, 2021 by under Events.    

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The Friday night pickleball group celebrated Kimberly’s birthday last Friday at Nahola. Brian took one for the team and ended his video game stream early so he could pick up our pizza and have it ready so that none of us would have to stop playing to get food and so the food would be ready by the time play was over. He is such a trooper. It’s Kimberly’s birthday so we wanted it to be special.

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I got a couple of large pizzas — one all meat and one cheeseburger — and some cheesy bread sticks for everyone to share.

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The gang really wanted cheesy bread but when I called they immediately told me they were out of medium sized pizzas. I told the lady it was fine because I was ordering large pizzas but when I got to the cheesy bread she said they couldn’t make it because they make it out of the medium pizza dough. So I ended up getting three orders of cheesy bread sticks instead.

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I really didn’t need to get the cheesy bread sticks because we had more than enough pizza for everyone and we just ended up having most of the bread sticks leftover. I suppose it is better to have more food than not enough.

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Here’s a picture of our kick ass Friday night group. I love these peeps and I love my Friday nights at Nahola. So glad Debbie included me and made me permanent on the roster. Until next time. GNG.

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Sobeks Visit Wichita

Posted on July 29, 2021 by under Community.    

Rosti and William Sobek, a father-and-son pro pickleball team from Key West, took the show on the road this summer. The show being Sobek Pickleball Academy. They embarked on a 75-day road trip across 36 states teaching pickleball clinics, competing in tournaments, and enjoying some sights along the way.

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Wichita didn’t have any clinics scheduled but they had some time as they were passing through and decided that they wanted to check out our Chicken N Pickle. Not surprising because Chicken N Pickle is a destination in itself. There are only a handful of locations around the nation so it’s pretty special to have one here. I have known quite a few people to come to Wichita just to check out our Chicken N Pickle so they aren’t, by any means, the first.

Anyway, they didn’t have a place to stay lined up or solid plans for that matter. My friend Michael Cheung saw that they were looking for a host on Facebook and texted me about it exactly one day before they were set to arrive in Wichita. I reached out to Rosti on Facebook and offered to house them. They said they really only needed one night of lodging, which wasn’t a problem because we have vacant bedrooms that hardly ever get used. However, the last time I offered to house strangers on Facebook, Brian freaked out on me a little bit and it took a lot of convincing for him to allow them to stay with us.

I told Brian that these guys (the Sobeks) were going to be in town the next day and needed a place to stay for the night and I offered to house them. Brian was surprisingly cool about it all. Perhaps because he had heard of the Sobeks and maybe watched their videos? Or maybe because he thought I was about to tell him that I had quit my job and this news was nowhere near that extreme? Or maybe because he was busy re-configuring his gaming PC and so he didn’t really completely process what I was asking? I don’t know. Either way, I’m glad he took the news of strangers staying in our house overnight pretty well.

Now, for what to do with these guys as my weekend was already planned out. I knew they wanted to play at Chicken N Pickle but without any kind of reservation that’s near impossible. Chicken N Pickle is usually booked to the hilt on the weekends. Luckily, I ran into Cody (the guy with a stranglehold on all the high level male players in the city) and caught wind of their Saturday morning game (which I previously heard had stopped for a while but they were actually having one that Saturday) and I asked if he could make room for the Sobeks so they could have some skilled players to play with/against while they’re in Wichita. I think this might have been a bigger ask if Cody wasn’t already familiar with the Sobeks but he actually remembers playing against them in the Texas Open. He said he and Ev actually won that match. So at least he knew they could hang with his group of players and that I wasn’t sending a couple of hacks to his elite Saturday game. The timing worked out perfectly — the Sobeks being in town, my running into Cody, Cody having a Saturday morning game where he could make room for two more players. It was quite a relief because, even if I did have time to entertain these two pros, I wouldn’t be able to play at a stimulating and challenging enough level. It just wouldn’t be much fun for them. Anyway, I think the Sobeks seemed thrilled that they didn’t have to mess with having to make an online reservation and that they had a great group of guys to play with.

I usually spend my entire Friday evening at Nahola (open play from 5-7 pm and then Debbie’s Friday night play group from 7-9 pm) and that Friday night was extra special because we were celebrating Kimberly’s birthday. So I couldn’t just bail on it. But now I had these two house guests who I couldn’t just abandon. At first I was just going to take them with me to Nahola open play but then I realized that a bunch of other people want to meet and play with them and the two courts at Nahola probably wasn’t going to cut it. I decided to abandon that plan and took them to Seneca Park instead. Karen, Steve, Tim, and others met us there.

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Karen and I had the opportunity to play mixed doubles with Rosti and William while we were waiting for other players to show up. It was such a treat!

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Jeremy showed up and got to play with them too. Ian, who is normally at Nahola on Friday nights as well, somehow found his way to Seneca Park that night also.

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Jon even came out of his sabbatical from pickleball to play a couple of games. That was a real surprise. Having proclaimed his “retirement” from the sport, I totally did not expect him to show up.

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Here are a some pictures of my friends Steve and Jon, playing against the Sobeks.

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Anyway, once they got to playing I was able to make my exit to go to Nahola without feeling bad because I knew I was leaving my house guests in good hands.

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The next morning Brian and I had a lot going on so we were both out of the house by 7:30 AM, which was around the same time the guys were leaving to go to Chicken N Pickle to play with Cody’s group. I had back to back appointments that Saturday so by the time I got back home they were already gone. I didn’t get to say goodbye to William but I did say goodbye to Rosti before I left the house that morning. I gave him a hug goodbye and wished them well on the rest of their summer adventure and he gave me a CD of pickleball songs.

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Here are some pictures from Saturday morning at Chicken N Pickle.

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It was a pleasure meeting Rosti and William. It’s always great to meet people you’ve only ever seen in YouTube videos and followed on social media. I’m glad that we had the opportunity to meet and host them during their brief stop in Wichita.

That’s all for now. Until next time. GNG.

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Senior Services of Wichita

Posted on July 28, 2021 by under Community.    

My friend Matt Mayfield, PR Coordinator for Senior Services of Wichita, recently talked to the Andover Rotary Club about the services that the agency provides, the Meals on Wheels program, and their upcoming fundraising events.

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I knew about the Meals on Wheels program but I really didn’t know about their other services. And, even though I was aware of the various senior center locations, I really had no idea about all the activities offered to members.

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In addition to their well-known Meals on Wheels program and the lesser-known Roving Pantry (grocery delivery service for home-bound seniors 60 and over who cannot shop for themselves and have no one else to shop for them), Senior Services of Wichita offers senior employment assistance, fitness classes, specialized programs like Spanish classes, educational programs like legal and financial advice or help with navigating Medicare, foot care and other health screenings, in-home support services, information and outreach.

Matt’s presentation to our club was quite enlightening in that it opened my eyes to all of the great things that Senior Services of Wichita is doing for older Wichitans. And, on top of that, Matt had the opportunity to promote their upcoming fundraising events to the members of our club – namely their 5K Run and Walk on Sunday, September 12, and Picklepalooza from September 18 to 25. I will be participating in Picklepalooza on Thurday, September 23, as part of the Evergy team. We will have six players: Sarah Pearson, Chris Wilson, Paul Haas, Jeff and Anita Harris, and me. I love pickleball so I’m super excited for this event.

I’m grateful to Matt for coming to speak to our club. I learned a lot and I’m sure the other members did as well. Until next time. GNG.

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Sharon Family Trip to Wichita

Posted on July 27, 2021 by under Family.    

We had a wonderful opportunity to spend time with Richard, Amy and their five kiddos on their most recent visit to Wichita. I’m so glad they agreed to meet at Chicken N Pickle because (a) I wanted to share my absolute favorite place with them and (b) it’s conveniently located down the street from my Aqua Zumba class at VASA Woodlawn so it was easy for me to get there.

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Amy has not changed one bit since the first day we met her. As for Richard, other than the gray hairs, he’s as youthful as ever. Both guys actually have such gray hair in this pic. I hadn’t noticed until now but Brian’s hair, which is normally more of a salt and pepper color, looks super white in this photo.

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Here’s the entire Sharon family with their five kiddos. I joke that every time we see them they’ve multiplied.

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Chicken N Pickle was the perfect place to bring these guys because there are plenty of activities for the kids to do while the four of us caught up. It was wonderful to see them and meet their beautiful kids on this trip.

That’s all for now. Until next time. GNG.

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Brian Gets Dose #1

Posted on July 26, 2021 by under Health.    

Brian got his first dose of the Pfizer COVID vaccine last week. I took a bunch of pictures because I honestly never thought this day would come. He has been so adamant about not getting vaccinated despite all the research that has proven it to be extremely beneficial.

Anyway, he was freaking out about it a lot and wanted me to be there — which worked out well because I wanted to take pics of the momentous event. It’s like hell froze over. Seriously. Because he didn’t want to get vaccinated. At all.

I think the clincher is our upcoming trip to Jamaica. He knows that he can’t go unless he gets fully vaccinated. And he knows that I will go with or without him. So, yeah. He pretty much had no choice. There was no dragging his feet any longer.

Below are the pictures from his first dose. Shot #2 happens in about three weeks. Stay tuned for the continuation of this vaccination saga. Will he go through with it? You’ll just have to come back here in a few weeks to find out.

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