Congressman Joel Pritchard and his two friends, Barney McCallum and Bill Bell, invented pickleball in 1965. During the spring of 1976, the first known pickleball tournament occurred, and by 1990, people in all 50 states played the game.
Pickleball is a racket sport similar to badminton, but players use a pickleball paddle and a wiffle ball. The court of pickleball shares the same dimensions and layout of a badminton court, with a net and rules similar to tennis and a few modifications. In 1984, the USA Pickleball Association formed to perpetuate the growth and advancement of pickleball on a national level. The USAPA became a non-profit company in 2005. The first USAPA National Tournament took place in Buckeye, Arizona, from Nov. 2 through Nov. 8, 2009.