The Association of Pickleball Players (APP) has revealed its first APP Signature Event of the 2024 calendar, the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open.
A Significant Milestone
This event will be held from January 3-7 at Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Indiana. It represents a significant milestone in the world of pickleball in Indiana, facilitated by a collaborative effort with key partners, including the Westfield Sports Commission, Hamilton County Sports Authority, Hamilton County Tourism, Indiana Sports and Tourism Bid Fund, and the Grand National Racquet Center (also in Westfield), a facility set to open its doors in 2025.
The 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships will be the first competition of its kind, broadcast nationwide. It will bring together the finest college pickleball teams from across the country to demonstrate their prowess in direct competition.
Each team will comprise a minimum of four players (two women and two men) and a maximum of six players (three women and three men).
Every. Pickle. Point. Counts.
The competition will feature a novel team format encompassing singles, doubles, and mixed doubles matches, employing rally scoring with a “win by one” rule. The scoring system, known as “Every. Pickle. Point. Counts.,” intensifies the significance of every game and point.
Collegiate teams interested in participating are requested to express their intent to field a team through theapp.global. The APP will communicate comprehensive registration details for confirmed college teams at a later date.
In conjunction with the 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships, the APP will host the APP Midwest Open, welcoming players of diverse ages and skill levels. The amateur brackets will adhere to the established APP double-elimination format for singles, doubles, and mixed doubles competitions.
Amateur registrations for the event will commence on September 14 via PickleballBrackets.com.
Fastest-Growing City In Indiana
This dynamic event will unfold at the expansive 400-acre Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, strategically positioned 30 miles north of Indianapolis.
Westfield is recognized as the fastest-growing city in Indiana, and its Grand Park Sports Campus, home to the Pacers Athletic Center and the official training camp venue for the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts, offers a remarkable array of 57 outdoor fields catering to soccer, football, lacrosse, baseball, and softball enthusiasts.
The founder of MD Sports Marketing, John Moorin, said, “I am so excited to see the vision come to reality with the launch of this event with the APP and such a terrific group of committed partners.
“When I first talked to [APP Founder] Ken Hermann about the idea to bring collegiate pickleball to Westfield, I knew I called the right person. I have many unforgettable memories playing in APP events, and I am so happy to help create that same excitement for the college athletes who will compete in this great, nationally-televised event. It’s going to be incredible!”
Grand Park Events Center
The Grand Park Events Center, a sprawling 377,000-square-foot facility, will become a pickleball hub for the APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open.
This adapted venue will showcase 28 dedicated pickleball courts, including a Championship Court. It will also offer stadium seating, affording clear views of all courts, VIP seating, player locker rooms, and a spacious bar and restaurant area that offers a panoramic view of the action on the courts.
Matt Trnian, Grand Park Director, said, “We are excited to host the 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open here at Grand Park Sports Campus in its inaugural year and for years to come! The addition of pickleball to the campus continues to show how we can utilize the facility for a variety of sports.
Breaking news 📣 @OfficialAPPTour has announced the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open, held January 3-7 at @GrandParkSports!— Hamilton Co. Sports (@HamiltonCoSport) September 12, 2023
We look forward to welcoming pickleball athletes of all skill levels for this exciting event 🎉 https://t.co/kwtGTh5390
“Exponential Growth In College Picklkeball”
APP Founder Ken Herrmann commented, “We are thrilled to be heading to Westfield for our first APP Signature Event of 2024, the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open.
“This event is a special one – it’s the first of its kind to feature college-level pickleball teams battling it out for gold, and it kicks off our long-term efforts in the collegiate space. You will see exponential growth in college pickleball in 2024, with new events by the APP and at colleges and universities across the country.
“We are excited to help fuel this growth and put on a world-class tournament for college players, and everyone who takes part.”
Westfield Sports Commission President Matt Deck said, “The Westfield Sports Commission could not be more excited about our first official event and the beginning of a long-lasting relationship with the APP!”
While the mayor of Westfield Andy Cook added, “I am thrilled to welcome the Association of Pickleball Players and all participants to the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open at Grand Park Sports Campus.”
“This event marks a significant milestone for our city, showcasing our commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles and fostering community through sports. We are honored to host this prestigious event and look forward to witnessing the passion and talent of pickleball players nationwide.”
“A Memorable Experience”
Hamilton County Sports Authority Director Carl Daniels was equally enthusiastic: “The Hamilton County Sports Authority team looks forward to welcoming the APP for this innovative and exciting new event highlighting both collegiate and open play.”
“It’s tremendous to see the platform the APP provides for pickleball players of all skill levels. Our team is excited to create a memorable experience in our destination for all these athletes.”
A Celebration Of Athleticism And Sportsmanship
Scott Willis, Westfield Mayor Elect, said in conclusion, “I am excited to join the celebration of athleticism and sportsmanship that the APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open bring to our city.”
“I congratulate the APP for organizing this event and thank them for choosing Westfield as the host location. This is a first for Grand Park and an expansion of sporting events at the park.
“I am eager to support and continue building upon initiatives that enhance our community’s quality of life and promote the spirit of competition.”
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