Pickleball one step closer to becoming official state sport of Washington

Bill Would Declare Pickleball The Official State Sport Of Washington
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OLYMPIA, Wash.– Get your pickleball racquets ready– it’s one step closer to becoming Washington’s official state sport.

The Senate bill passed the House 83-15. The next move is for it to head to Gov. Jay Inslee’s desk for his signature.

Why pickleball? A Washington congressman named Joel McFee Pritchard and his friends invented pickleball on Bainbridge Island in 1965, according to USA Pickleball.

“These men created the game at Pritchard’s summer cabin after they ‘persuaded’ their abnormally hyper children to go outside to play a few games of badminton, but there was no pickleball equipment to be found,” the bill reads. “Instead, these fathers did some brainstorming and created a new game using ping-pong paddles, a net, and a neighbor’s plastic Wiffle ball.”

The bill states the rules they created are still in use today by the USA Pickleball Association.

The bill says that the game has “expanded beyond Washington to become a nationally and internationally beloved game” with more than four million people playing in the United States and 67 member countries in the International Federation of Pickleball.

The Economist declared pickleball “the fastest-growing sport in America.”

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