BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Bend Pickleball Club announced that the Pacific Northwest Classic, sponsored by Beaver Coach Sales, kicks off at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, July 28 and runs through the evening of Sunday, August 1 at two locations; Pine Nursery Park and Pickleball Zone, both in Bend.
The 2020 Pacific Northwest Classic was canceled due to COVID-19, but this year’s tournament is back, bigger than ever. The event offers a $25k purse and will be co-hosted by Northwest pickleball pros Wes Gabrielson and Eric Lange. Pacific Northwest Classic is also part of the APP Tour, an international 18-tournament series, of which PNC is the Tour’s only Northwest stop.
Nearly 800 players from across the country, including well-known pickleball pros, will participate in the five-day event and PNC Co-Director Christie Gestvang says, “Nearly 75% of the PNC players are coming from outside of Central Oregon and about 60% are traveling from out of state, which really demonstrates a growing enthusiasm for this particular tournament. We, along with Beaver Coach Sales and all of our PNC sponsors, welcome all players to Bend and wish them the best of luck in the tournament!”
This year’s tournament players range in age from 11 to 85 which, says PNC Co-Director Kirk Foster, reinforces pickleball’s broad appeal and growing popularity. “Pickleball is still the fastest growing sport in the United States and for good reason. It’s fun, it’s easy to learn, and it’s a great way to socialize while getting some exercise. For anyone who is curious about pickleball, this tournament is a fantastic way to see some great play and learn more about the game.”
Admission to the Pacific Northwest Classic is free and the public is encouraged to attend, while observing social distancing guidelines. Please also note that event parking is limited and on a first come, first serve basis. The complete tournament play schedule can be found at pickleballtournaments.com.
About Bend Pickleball Club
Founded in 2011, Bend Pickleball Club exists to promote a love of the sport and a passion for seeing it grow and thrive in one of the most beautiful and active regions in the country. With a membership of over 900 and growing, the mission of the nonprofit club is to facilitate the growth of pickleball in Central Oregon for the enjoyment, health and social engagement of all players by offering organized recreational and competitive play, ensuring opportunities for the continued development of all players in a collegial and sportsmanlike environment and working to expand facilities as needed. For more information, please visit www.bendpickleballclub.com