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Featured Picklers - Suncoast Pickleball Club members

Last tourney of 2023 for Suncoast Pickleball Club

Top finishers stand on a podium after a Suncoast Pickleball tournament.
Top finishers stand on a podium after a Suncoast Pickleball tournament.

The fourth and last tournament of the year for the Suncoast Pickleball Club will be the longest with the most participants for the fledgling organization. The Christmas Classic is slated for Dec. 15-17 at the Sarah Vande Berg Tennis Center in Zephyrhills.

The club’s three other tourneys were one-day events with the most recent one, the Oktoberfest Invitational that coincided with the center’s third-year anniversary,

drawing about 120 players. The upcoming classic will run for three days with organizers expecting about 250 people.

The classic will begin with a clinic on that Friday, men’s and women’s doubles competitions on Saturday and mixed doubles on Sunday. In all, there will be 14 divisions with a round-robin format and a medal round.

The Suncoast Pickleball Club is run by licensed instructors Armando Cajuso, his wife Paula Rives, and Ana O’Donell. Formed last spring, it lists nearly 250 members.

All four of the club’s tourneys have taken place at the Zephyrhills-based center. But even though the organizers like that facility, they plan to host future events in Pinellas County as well.

Additionally, the upcoming classic is a fundraiser for Toys for Tots with portions of the $50 entry fee benefiting that charitable organization and boxes put out for donations.

Photo courtesy of the Suncoast Pickleball Club

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