Just to add to the seemingly never-ending list of celebrity pickleballers, we can now add E! News presenter Maria Menounos and former Miss-Universe Olivia Culpo after it was revealed the latter requested pickleball be a part of her engagement party!
Keeping It In The Family
“I love pickleball. It’s something that I’ve been doing for a while with my family,” shared Culpo. As Culpo reveals, Menounos was responsible for her interest in pickleball:
“Maria Menounos was the first person who introduced me to it, and then my sister became obsessed with playing it in my family.”
Indeed, Culpo’s sister Aurora captured a moment on Instagram, showing the family alongside “pickleball coach to the stars” Matt Manasse after an April 2022 lesson.
A Special Place In Her Heart
The sport obviously holds a special place in Culpo’s heart. Stark evidence of that is its incorporation into the engagement celebration with Christian McCaffrey, a running back for the San Francisco 49ers, she held in July.
Culpo shared with celeb news provider, POPSUGAR, “Everyone loved it. So it’s definitely a staple in my life now.”
Culpo joined other celebrity pickleball enthusiasts, such as Taylor Lautner and “Bachelorette” alumnus Tyler Cameron, at the “Pickleball Classic” recently.
This event, hosted by the beverage brand Celsius and YouTube influencer David Dobrik at his Sherman Oaks residence, awarded the victorious duo Dobrik and Lautner $50,000 to donate to their chosen charity.
Read our article about the event here.
Social And Collobarative
Culpo, a partner of Celsius, formed a team with Peloton instructor Rad Lopez. They didn’t secure victory, and that’s fine with her. She sees the essence of pickleball lying more in its social and collaborative aspects than in cutthroat competition.
“I love that it’s partner style. I love that you have a partner with you to support. Couples on couples can be really fun,” she said.
Pickleball possesses a unique attribute for Culpo — it allows her to face her professional athlete fiancé (5ft 11in; 205lb) on an equal footing, at least in terms of physical stature.
Pickleball Is Different!
She commented, “I feel like you don’t have to be a big person to win. A lot of sports and activities, like generally, the bigger you are, the stronger you are, the more of a shot you have to win with.
“With pickleball, it’s just a different type of sport. I’m not very competitive in the sports world, so it’s just fun.”
While not explicitly stated, pickleball also gives Culpo the excuse to exhibit her finest tennis-inspired attire. (Should you admire Culpo’s ensemble, she is wearing Casablanca.)
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