Come and Try Pickleball

Poly Va’a Club members Laihaina Luna (Fijian) head coach Frank Tofa(Samoan) and president Eddie Jensen (Rotuman) - one third of the club have a Polynesian heritage.

By Ron Lane

Before we start talking sport, I think that it is only right that we take a moment in time to say a big thank you to all those council staff, club officials, coaches mums and dads, supporters and sponsors who have stood by their people, both in the past and in this the most difficult of times

The recent Noosa Council Adult “Come n Try” Active Time Table is to be applauded. Not only does it supply all the relevant information regarding joining, but in particular it gives the new sports, such as Pickleball, great exposure. Also, it makes the grey brigade aware that there is yet another sport at their fingertips.

This sport is definitely starting to grow: not only in Noosa but also other areas. For example, Brisbane now has Pickleball centres in Newmarket, Coorparoo, East Brisbane and Chandler. For those interested, the Noosa club will hold its next tournament on Saturday 10 October at the Noosa Leisure Centre Noosaville. This will be run on a Round Robin Format with semi-finals and finals: men’s and women’s doubles, in Intermediate and Advanced divisions. Registration will be 11am, warm up 11.30 and play will commence 12 noon. Visitors welcome.

Regarding its growth, the date 10.10.2020 is now being officially recognised as World Pickleball Day by the governing body, World Pickleball Federation, based in America. A day dedicated to global expansion. The final “Come n Try”day for Noosa Pickleball, will be Thursday 17 September with registration at the Leisure Centre being 5.45pm and circuit classes 6.45-7.45. Good luck to all involved.

The hard job of fund raising for country sporting organisations, is of course taking a massive hit from the necessary, but vital health regulations. One of the latest to suffer is our local Noosa Pirates Rugby League Club. Because of the regulations regarding crowd sizes, they have been informed that the annual Rodeo, their biggest fund– raising event of the year, has been cancelled.

It was in the year 2000, that the Rodeo was first held and what a success. A complete family affair, a real winner for all involved; a great fund raiser and for a lot of our young locals the first time look at such an event. And also, another great promotion for our community. This is only the second time in 20 years that the event has been cancelled; the other occasion was because of torrential rain.

In a move to compensate for this, Pirates will on 24 October, host the first ever, Pirates NRL Grand Final Luncheon. This will be held at Saw and Mill Restaurant Cooroy; the town that proudly lays claim to being the birth place of the Pirates Rugby League. (tickets will be from $95 all inclusive). Special guest will be Moses Mbye West Tigers NRL captain and Queensland State of Origan star and Jason Hetherington. Good to see Moses Mbye and Jake Friend, both former Noosa Pirates, in the Queensland State of Origan Squad.

There will be memoribla, auctions, raffles and give- ways ,and of course, lots of yarns and laughter. And all of this will be under the control of M.C. Matt Collins. Starting at 12 and going on till 3pm.with the menu being a two-course meal plus drinks. This will be followed by another function at the Noosa Pirates club house Tewantin. Starting at 5pm this will feature the NRL Grand Final Calcutta Draw for the first try scorer in the Grand Final; seats will be limited to 100.

“The reason for referring to the luncheon as the first ever,” said club General Manager Brett Winkler, “is that hopefully it will be the start of a new tradition; a tradition that will see us united as never before. An atmosphere of good will and club spirit.”

Out on the playing field, the junior division goes from strength to strength with players from u/6 to u/18 being catered for. Friday nights will see two games at Pirate Park and Saturday at the Cooroy grounds, a total of ten games will be on the agenda. As always, a big thank you to the parents: the unsung heroes of all sporting clubs.

Despite the A grade team being out for the season, the senior club and the junior division is now united as never before. The improvements to the club house, lighting facilities and grounds, definitely create a positive atmosphere: and now with the two clubs working and playing together as one anything is possible. Add to this, the major sponsors are still on board and some new people have now been added to the list. Thank you to the regulars and a big welcome to the new.

The Pirates executive has set the date for the big one, the Annual General Meeting. This is always the most important meeting for any sport, but this year it won’t be easy. With the health regulations being what they are, all major decisions when finalised, will require the total support of all involved.

Most important will be to approach the season with an open mind. A big attendance of the general members is essential: this will give those elected the feeling that they have the support of the members. Remember a good AGM will usually be the start of a good year: and the date for the big one is Sunday November 1 10am. All the best to all involved.

Last Friday night was a worry for the Noosa Outrigger Canoe Club. It was raining and Saturday was to be their biggest day for months. This was their day to host their second event since March, and with the added health problems, a day of rain wouldn’t help.

However, all went well. A beautiful Noosa day and the 18 visiting clubs that assembled in Chaplin Park Noosaville had everything they wished for. “We are very happy with the outcome,” said club spokesman Craig Harris, “the attendance is good and above all everyone has complied with all the Coved regulations. From the Noosa Coast Guard, we had two duty boats for river patrol : and to keep everyone informed in the park team area, an excellent public address system was set up. This was absolutely necessary as it was essential for all paddlers, to be reminded of the spray down system: necessary after every race this was a major factor in the health regulations. Immediately after a race, with the adrenaline and excitement still pumping it would be easy to forget.”

The clubs came from far and wide: from Burrum Heads in the Fraser Coast Region to Redcliffe in the Morton Bay Area. For the Burrum Heads club it was indeed a great effort considering they have only 13 members: but they were there and gave it their all. Another club of interest was the Polynesian Va’a Alo Outrigger Canoe Club which is situated in the Shorncliffe Area. Now in its 6th year it has 50 members and is very proud of its mixed race. “We have Samoan, N.Z. Cook Island, Maori, Fijian, Rotuman, PNG ,Aussies, Kiwis and,” the secretary added with a laugh, “one Pom.” It was quite obvious that for Steve Tomoana club Secretary, his club position was definitely one of life’s pleasures.

Noosa men’s coach, Des Mabbott, was very happy overall. “Our visitors were very happy with the way the regatta was run: it was extremely well organised and there were no holdups. With the extreme regulations enforced on us, it was good to get this feed- back: we made every effort, every point was covered and cleanliness was strictly enforced. Regarding the competition as a whole, the team went well and as a coach I was very pleased. All in all, it was a successful regatta.”

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