Beginner Pickleball Clinics

Perhaps your friends play Pickleball. Maybe you’re a tennis or racquetball player looking for a new challenge. If you have a fun-loving attitude and an ounce of athletic ability, then Pickleball is the sport you need to start playing.

In the LEVEL ONE 2-hour Beginner Clinic, you’ll learn how to effectively hit the ball, maintain a rally, keep score, the rules and basic game play. At the end of this clinic, players will have the foundational knowledge and skills to start playing Pickleball.

We are now offering a LEVEL TWO Beginner Clinic. This is for players who have taken the first clinic and want to build upon their foundational game. We’ll take you through a variety of drills to improve all the shots you need to become a skillful player. We’ll also improve your court positioning and teach you how to outsmart your opponents.

Paddles and balls will be provided and participation is capped at 12 players for each clinic so that everyone will receive individualized coaching time. $35 per person.

Instructors: John Moore (bio) and Sandy Halkett (bio)

Upcoming Clinics


LEVEL ONE – Thursday, Aug. 22 | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
LEVEL ONE – Friday. Aug. 23 | 6:00 to 8:00 pm
LEVEL ONE – Thursday, Aug, 29 | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
LEVEL ONE – Thursday, Sep. 5 | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
LEVEL ONE – Sunday, Sep. 22 | 2:00 to 4:00 pm

LEVEL TWO – Sunday, Aug. 18 | 5:30 to 7:00 pm
LEVEL TWO – Friday, Aug. 30 | 6:00 to 7:30 pm
LEVEL TWO – Thursday, Sep. 12 | 10:00 to 11:30 am
LEVEL TWO – Sunday, Sep. 29 | 2:00 to 3:30 pm

NOTE: To attend a LEVEL TWO clinic, you must first take a LEVEL ONE clinic.

Location: Timmons Park
121 Oxford St, Greenville, SC 29607 [map]

NOTE: We may move some weekday clinics indoors to Victor Gym (Greer).

Email John Moore
to reserve your spot in an upcoming clinic

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2019 Greenville Spring Smash Winners

Rain played havoc on the 2019 Greenville Spring Smash. We made a tough decision in canceling Mixed Doubles. We also endured two rain delays to get in Women’s & Men’s Doubles play on Saturday. Players were patient and understanding throughout and the competition on the courts was intense.

Kudos to the winning teams!

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2019 Greenville Spring Smash


It’s Tournament Time!

The 2019 Greenville Pickleball Spring Smash Tournament will be played on Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13.

It’s a round robin tournament for players aged 18+ at all skill levels. This tournament will be played outdoors at Butler Springs Park on 10 temporary courts (taped lines on quality tennis courts).

Mixed Doubles will be played on Friday and Women’s & Men’s Doubles will be played on Saturday. The cost is $35 for the first event and $5 for the second event.

Greenville County Parks, Recreation & Tourism is hosting the tournament and Upstate Pickleball will be handling tournament director duties.

The 2019 Greenville Pickleball Spring Smash is pleased to be affiliated with State Games South Carolina.


Friday, Apr. 12 – Mixed Doubles
Saturday, Apr. 13 – Women’s & Men’s Doubles

Sunday, Apr. 14 is the rain date

Registration is Closed.


Registration deadline: Friday, April 5.

Current Player List (April 3)

Butler Springs Park (301 Butler Springs Rd, Greenville, SC 29615) [MAP]

First event $35, $5 for the second event

Mixed Doubles | Women’s Doubles | Men’s Doubles
(round robin format)

Onix Fuse G2 Outdoor ball

Age Categories*:
18+ | 50+ | 65+
(age as of 12/31/19)
* Tournament Director reserves the right to combine age and skill level events based on participation.

Skill Levels*:
2.5/3.0 | 3.5 | 4.0 | 4.5/5.0
* Unsure of your skill level? Refer to this Pickleball Skill Level self-assessment sheet (.pdf). Or, ask an experienced player for their assessment of your skill level.

Players Needing Partners:
If you are in need of a partner, please email John Moore with the following information: Name | Age | Skill Level | Event Needing a Partner.

The current list of Players Needing Partners can be accessed here.

Cancellations before March 29, 2019 (5:00 pm) will receive a full refund. No refunds after March 30, 2019.

Inclement Weather Policy:
This is an outdoor tournament. There is no indoor facility back-up plan. If weather is a factor we will do all we can to play matches. There are no refunds if the tournament is impacted by weather. Sunday April, 14 will be a rain day.

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Goodbye Gower. Hello Timmons.

Timmons Park has replaced Gower Park as the flagship place to play pickleball outdoors in Greenville. All previously organized play at Gower Park has moved to Timmons Park [map].

The City of Greenville has installed a locked bin at Timmons Park for us to store outdoor balls, demo paddles and our temporary court divider system. We are now ready to make the most out of playing at Timmons Park

Currently, organized play at Timmons Park is scheduled for Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday mornings starting at 10:00 am. Come join us to play.

With fall turning into winter, we will be moving to an early afternoon weekday start time for organized play. An announcement will be made when we make the switch to a later start time. (Please note that Saturday play will continue to begin at 10:00 am.)

Rain and cold temperatures will affect our play at Timmons Park. If it has recently rained, then it’s highly likely the courts will be too wet to play. Also, if temperatures are below 45 degrees then most players will decide it’s too cold to play outdoors. (We do have a handful of diehard players that will play in the coldest of temperatures.)

As always, refer to the Upstate Pickleball online calendar for playing locations and start times.

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Places to Play Pickleball Indoors

With the weather turning colder, we’ve been turning to playing Pickleball indoors. Here is our updated listing of where you can play Pickleball indoors in the greater Greenville area.

Ray Hopkins Senior Center | Mauldin [map]
The gym floor has been repaired and indoor play has restarted on 3 Pickleball courts. The current playing schedule is: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 1:00 to 3:45 pm and Fridays from 10:30 am to 3:45 pm. (Players must be 55+ in age.)

Simpsonville Activity & Senior Center | Simpsonville [map]
There are 4 indoor Pickleball courts. The playing schedule varies per month but when play is happening, it’s from 1:00 to 4:30 pm. The playing schedule for the remainder of the year is: 11/26 & 11/28 (Mon, Wed) ; 12/3 & 12/4 (Mon, Tues) ; 12/11 & 12/13 (Tues, Thur) ; 12/17 & 12/18 (Mon, Tues) ; 12/27 (Thur). (Players must be 50+ in age.)

Victor Gym | Greer [map]
The City of Greer is opening Victor Gym for indoor morning play on 3 indoor Pickleball courts from 9:00 to 12:00 noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Exact playing dates are: December 4, 6, 11, 13, 18, and 20.

Eastside Family YMCA | Taylors [map]
The YMCA in Taylors is just starting indoor Pickleball play. There are 2 courts available to play on Fridays evenings starting on November 30 from 5:00 to 8:00 pm. It’s free for non-members during December. Exact playing dates are: 11/30 and December 7, 14, 21, 28.

Sterling Community Center |Greenville [map]
The indoor gym at Sterling Community Center is still available for play on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon. As well as Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 9:00 pm.

Rock Springs Impact Center | Easley [map]
On Monday and Tuesdays nights from 6:00 to 9:00 pm, you can play indoors on 3 courts at the Rock Springs Impact Center in Easley. (There is a small membership fee to play.)

Fourth Presbyterian | Greenville [map]
The gym at Fourth Presbyterian Church near downtown Greenville continues to be open for indoor play on Friday evenings from 6:00 to 9:00 pm.

Central-Clemson Recreation Center | Center [map]
Indoor play happens on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon at the Central-Clemson Recreation Center. (There is a small membership fee to play.)

Upstate Pickleball maintains an online playing calendar.
We do our best to keep it updated. Please note that Recreation Centers are closed on major holidays (and during inclement weather). And, if it’s colder than 50 degrees, then most players will likely stay home rather than play outdoors.

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Timmons Park — NOW OPEN

The two courts have been transformed into six gorgeous pickleball courts. (Yes, gorgeous!!!) The City of Greenville has opened the courts to the public. We can play on the courts with a strong caveat. Read below

There is not a court divider between the two banks of courts. This is a MAJOR SAFETY ISSUE because balls will roll onto the pickleball court behind you while playing. The City is aware of this issue and will fix it soon.

Until a permanent divider is in place, Upstate Pickleball only wants us to use one bank of courts. That means we will have 3 side-by-side pickleball courts to play on. Once the City solves for the court divider issue, all 6 courts will be ready for us to get our Zero-Zero-Start on.

Unlike Gower Park, where we have a bin chained to the fence to hold balls and demo paddles, we do not have a bin (yet) at Timmons Park. Have patience with us. We’ve received approval for a bin from the City and are waiting for the City to install it.

Until the bin is installed, you will need to bring your own balls to play at Timmons Park.

These are exciting times. This has been a long time coming and it’s almost fully here.

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Upstate Pickleball celebrates Julia Hall

Julia Hall is a giver in this world. She has selflessly welcomed and taught so many people in the greater Greenville area how to play pickleball. She plays the role of sister, mother, grandmother and friend to all of us who play pickleball in the Upstate. Julia turned 79 recently.

Upstate Pickleball celebrated the goodness of Julia at Gower Park with a surprise birthday party. Here’s a snippet of that celebration…

Julia Hall wrote us the following “thank you” note…

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The 2018 Spring Smash was Smashing

Wow!! That was fun.

Friday was a great day for pickleball with lots of cool sun and hot action on the courts. Rain on Saturday forced us to play on a chilly Sunday but everyone was a trooper and played on. Thankfully, temperatures rose above 50 degrees by noon time.

It was great seeing 122 players bring their classy competitive spirit to the tournament. It was also great to see so many new friendships being made. Pickleball people are the best.

The Spring Smash had 14 divisions from Mixed to Men’s to Women’s. Interested in seeing the winning teams? Click here for a nifty two-sheeter listing all the Gold/Silver/Pickles winning teams.

We snapped LOTS of photos during the tournament. There are over 1,200 pictures in our photo gallery. We’ve grouped the photos by day and skill level to make it easier for you to pore over. These photos can be downloaded and used as you wish.

A huge thank you goes to Michelle Giles, Denise Newhouse, Sandy Halkett and John Moore for snapping all the photos.

Player Survey
If you played in the Spring Smash, please take a few minutes to respond to our Player Survey. Your perspective will help us design a better tournament experience. (Thanks.)

2019 Greenville Spring Smash Tournament
We are absolutely doing another tournament next spring. While we haven’t settled on the dates for the 2019 tournament, we do have a special announcement.

Next year’s Spring Smash will be part of the State Games South Carolina.

This is a tremendous opportunity for us to be part of a larger statewide sports festival. Just think, you could be the State Games South Carolina Gold medal winning team next year. (That’s cool, eh?)

We will certainly share more information about this exciting State Games South Carolina opportunity as we finalize details for the 2019 Spring Smash.

Thank You Joni and Rhiana
A massive amount of thanks goes to Joni Dilworth and Rhiana Barrera from Greenville County Parks & Rec. They’ve been instrumental in handling so many of the details needed to make the Spring Smash tournament happen. Without Joni and Rhiana, there would not be a tournament.

THANK YOU Joni and Rhiana!!!!! (And, I hope you’ve finally warmed up from Sunday.)

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Introducing Piranha Pickleball

Upstate Pballers… if you’ve seen Michelle Giles playing lately then you’ve seen her wearing a fierce Piranha Pickleball hat.

Piranha Pickleball, that’s the name of Michelle’s side hustle Pickleball business. Besides selling hats, she is also selling Pro-Lite Paddles. Michelle has demo Pro-Lite paddles for you to try out. They include the Titan, Groove, Rockstar, and Blaster. For more information, read below.

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Brandon Walters offering Pickleball Lessons

Brandon Walters has an extensive tennis background. He’s been taught by some world class tennis instructors and as a former professional tennis player, he has tremendous knowledge to pass on to others.

Brandon started playing Pickleball in the summer of 2016 and if you’ve played with him then you know he has a complete game. His form, footwork and strategy make him a force on the Pickleball court.

He’s now offering Pickleball lessons to teach others how to play better and smarter. If you want to take your game up a level (or two), then absolutely get a lesson from Brandon.

Orestes “OB” Baez recently started playing Pickleball from years of tennis. He credits Brandon for helping him with the transition…

“Brandon has a great sense for court positioning and ball placement.He has helped me transition to pickleball strategy with his easy style and engaging commentary. I highly recommend him as a coach.” –OB

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