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Pickleball and sheaf toss two new sports in Heritage Fest lineup

Jordan Travis • Jul 21, 2015 at 10:58 AM

Pickleball, O’Hearn said, is the combination of badminton, ping pong and tennis, O’Hearn said. The game is played with wooden or graphite paddles inside a badminton-sized court with the net lowered to the height of a tennis court. A perforated plastic ball is used, and the rules are similar to tennis.

The game was created in 1965 by a man in the state of Washington who named it after his dog, Pickles, O’Hearn said.

“It’s the fastest-growing sport in the U.S., particularly among seniors,” he said. “You know, the knees are going, the hips are going, and they can still play an organized sport.”

Nearby, a group of six men and one woman gathered under what looked like an upright for a pole vaulter. All seven held pitchforks, and were getting ready to heave a 16-pound sack over a crossbar. This is the essence of the sheaf toss, explained Jerry Bowersox, who organized the event. The competition is one event in the Highland Games competition, a series of traditional Scottish sports.

Read more of this story in Monday's edition of the Tribune.

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