Pickledilly News

Aiken pickleball player Diana Hunt was recently fetured in Bella Magazine for her interaction with tigers in Thailand.  Click here to read the story.


After a small opening bump with finicky keys, fun was had by all at the first day of play at First Presbyterian Church.  If you want to give the new facility a try, see the calendar for times, and sign up using the appropriate link under "Sign-ups" on the main menu.


The three indoor courts are ready to go at Aiken Presbyterian!  Thank you to our set-up crew of Mo Garcia, Chuck Buchanan, Mark Giddings, and John Reiter for getting the lines down.  Mo, we could not have done it without your expertise. 

Thank you also to those who very generously donated to the fund for the cost of the equipment.  Our pickleball family is, as always, a wonderful group.

Thank you to our local pickleball ambassador Chuck Buchanan for getting the ball rolling on being allowed to play at this venue. And a very special thanks goes to First Presbyterian Church for their generosity in allowing us to use their gym and for being so welcoming to us.  Please support this venue, as they are doing us a huge favor in allowing us to play there.

The first date for play will be Saturday, November 3rd.  Initially Saturdays will consist of three courts of drop-in play.  From 8:00 AM until 10:00 AM, all courts will have mixed-level play.  From 10:00 AM until noon, court 1 (the closest to the door) will be for beginners, court 2 (the one parallel to court 1) will be for intermediate players, and court 3 (the court on the far end) will be for advanced players.  Players MUST sign up for the session, even though it is drop-in play.  If there is no one signed up by 3:00 PM the day before the session, the session will be cancelled.  A link to this sign-up can be found under the “Sign-ups” tab on the main menu.

Mondays from 2:00 PM – 6:00 PM will offer two reserved courts (2 2-hour slots on each court) and one court for drop-in play.  This sign-up will also be available under “Sign-ups” on the website starting on the Thursday before the Monday of play.  The fist Monday session will be on November 12th, so the sign-up will be available on Thursday, November 8th. If no one has signed up by 9:00 AM on the Monday of the session, it will be cancelled.

Tuesday sessions from 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM will consist of two reserved courts and one court for drop-in play.  The first Tuesday session will be on November 6th.  If no one has signed up by 10:00 AM the day of the session, it will be cancelled.  These sign-ups will also be available starting the Thursday before play.

Please check the calendar (a link can be found on the main menu)  for future sessions. Some days are not available due to other activities at the church.

The format of the sessions has been set for November only.  We will solicit player input to evaluate the demand for each type of play before deciding on session formats for December.

Please park on Barnwell Avenue and go in the door by the Coke machine.  Turn right after you go in and go through the double doors into the gym.

There is a $2.00 per person fee for each session.  A container will be placed in the laundry room where the nets are stored.  All of these funds will go directly to the church as a donation to help them cover the costs of heating and air conditioning, and general wear and tear on the gym.



Click here to check out this article on pickleball and longevity in the Aiken Standard.


The October Round Robin was a great success.  Thank you to Nancy Vermilye for all her hard work in organizing this event, and thank you to all the court monitor volumteers who helped to make everything run smoothly.

Thank you also to all the players and subs.  Everyone showed great sportsmanship and played hard.  It was great to have players from Columbia and Augusta join us in this event. 

Winners from the various divisions are posted below.  For more photos, click here.

3.0 division

First place:  Paul Deason - Yuriko Palermo

Second place: Mike Wells - Russell Crews

Third place: Carole Mouton- Jim Tegart

3.5 division

First place: Walter Suescum - Vivian Chi

Second place: Richard Pack - Nelson Spitnale

Third place: Chuck Buchanan - Michelle Bullington

4.0 Division

First place: Mo Garcia - Luis Garay

Second place : Jeff Beckner - Jim Kabel


by Mike Beckner

We are pleased to announce that Diane Voss has agreed to assume the role of rating committee chairperson. 

She will work with Ron Nelson to learn the necessary skills before taking over sometime before January 2019.

Ron, we all owe you an incredible debt of gratitude for the hard work and commitment you have provided to the Aiken pickleball community, especially in your role as chairman of the rating committee.  Your work has been integral to our whole system of organizing the court structure and if we didn't have the rating program we would not have a cohesive program for  designating our limited courts.  Thank you so very much for your involvement and guidance.  




The Aiken Y has added drop-in play for non-members on Wednesdays. 

For details, go to https://thefamilyy.org/programs/22511492/pickleball/#division_2172373 and click on "Aiiken Non-member Drop-in".


by Mike Beckner

Aiken hosted the sixth annual Palmetto Indoor Pickleball Doubles Invitational tournament from 7-9 September and the tradition continues! 

Attendees were from 8 States and one foreign country with a total of 196 skilled participants engaging in highly competitive and entertaining pickleball.  We are indebted to the hard work of the tournament director, Lisa Miner, who was ably assisted by Mo Garcia, Keith Shaver, Nelson Spitnale and an enthusiastic support staff of volunteers from the Aiken “Pickledillys”.  Employees of the City of Aiken, Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department under the supervision of Pam Royal, Athletics Manager, supported the effort at Odell Weeks Community Center. 

Sponsors included Scott Singer of Janney Financial Advisors, Mo Power Sport, G4 Power Products, Security Federal Bank, Suzy Haslup Realtor, Baker Family Dentistry, Onix, Paddletek and Pickleball Central.com. 

Medalists from Aiken were Dennis Vermilye, John Fuller, Jeff Beckner, Walter Suescum, Mark Giddings, David Hoel, Nelson Swartzentruber, Jim Hughes, Jim Kabel, Keith Shaver, Josh Booth, Carlene Clark, Kathie Roberts, Barbara Dellamora, Rob Bromley, Marshall Read, Gene Murphy,Marian Garcia, Beverly Shaver, Vicki NcNair, Tony Quick, Chris Powers, Lisa Sanderson, Bel Madera, Diane Davies, Tracy Hallen, Sherri Vogel, Vince Brumfield, William Haller, Maria James, Michelle Bullington and Joyce Noland.  Congratulations to all and continued success.  

The tournament can only be categorized as an unqualified success and we look forward to next year’s tournament and hope to bring in many more visitors to take advantage of all that Aiken has to offer.  


We are well underway in the new year for the Pickledillys.  We do have one open position that needs to be filled immediately. 

It would be nice to see some new faces volunteering in the Pickledillys group. In this position, there would be people to assist you as needed.

League Manager

  • Shadow Mo Garcia this fall season
  • There are  two seasons for league each year - Spring and Fall
  • Schedule dates for league play - arrange location and time of play
  • Manage the captains
  • Manage the Top Dog Sports website
  • Arrange location and time of play

We appreciate your consideration. iI you are interested in this position, please contact Nancy and Joyce at info@aikenpickleball.com  


From Lisa Miner

I would like to thank every one of you personally for all the hard work you put in over the tournament weekend.

The tournament was a huge success and that was thanks, in no small part, to each and every one of you. From the check in and event desks to the lunch room and the court monitors, all the comments that I heard were entirely positive. Congratulations!

The post tournament survey results are in and I thought you might like to hear some of the feedback that we got. The players were asked to rate their enjoyment of tournament on a scale of 1 to 10 and the average score was 9.17. That’s incredible. 88.1% liked the swag bag contents, there were some who were not keen on the shirt color but when you pick something that bright you know some will object. The lunch scored 4.2 out of 5 and having lunch provided was considered a big bonus. When asked whether they would return next year 78.82% said yes and 17.65% were undecided — again great numbers.

Finally here are a few of the comments from the survey:

"All the volunteers were fantastic."

“Thank you for a great weekend. The organizers and volunteer staff tried very hard to make it enjoyable. Give them all a big hug."

"I had a wonderful time, good organization with helpful and courteous volunteers. Kudos to all of you."

"Loved loved loved the staff of volunteers - made it all worth while."

"Best run tournament that I have attended EVER"

"Had a Blast one of best Tournaments I’ve played. ??"

"The staff working the tournament are extremely friendly.”

So thank you once again. When I see you I will try and remember to give you the Big Hug!