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KASYVILLE, Utah /PRNewswire/ — The Picklr, the United States’ premiere indoor pickleball facility, along with The Dink and Katy Perry’s Firework Foundation, announced today an unprecedented giveaway for pickleball fans across the country. The “Picklr Your City” contest aims to transform one city’s pickleball scene and reward pickleball enthusiasts nationwide while fostering community engagement and excitement.  One city will be selected to win a new franchise location from The Picklr, bringing elite indoor courts to their area and invigorating their local pickleball community. Individual prizes include lifetime supplies of pickleball gear from The Picklr Shop & Stack Athletics, twenty-five lifetime memberships at The Picklr, a guest spot on the Picklepod Podcast & much more. The contest launched on Oct. 12, on the Instagram accounts of The Picklr & The Dink, as well as on Katy Perry’s Instagram account. The last day to participate in the “Picklr Your City” contest is Dec. 14, with the last day to nominate your city being Oct. 24.

The Picklr, The Dink and Katy Perry’s Firework Foundation, are teaming up for an unprecedented giveaway for pickleball fans nationwide. One city will be selected to win a new franchise location from The Picklr, bringing elite indoor courts to their area and invigorating their local pickleball community.

Among the prizes for “Picklr Your City”:

  • One Picklr facility for winning city
  • 25 lifetime memberships from the Picklr
  • Three lifetime supplies of pickleball gear from The Picklr Shop
  • Two lifetime supplies of pickleball apparel from Stack Athletics
  • Ten Pickleball paddles, any model
  • Ten cases of pickleballs, any model
  • One guest spot on The Dink’s Pickleball Pod
  •  All those who participate in all steps of the giveaway will receive $20 in gear to The Picklr Shop & a free One-Month Membership to the Picklr

Individual winners will be selected randomly, with participants having a chance to increase their odds through voting and engagement on social media. The cities with the most comments, votes, and likes will advance to the voting rounds, where the community can vote to bring a premium indoor Picklr facility to the winning city. Contest registration and details can be found online at https://thepicklr.com/picklryourcity/.

The Picklr announced a significant expansion in September and will be in over 80 locations in 11 states by early 2024. Known for its state-of-the-art facilities, vibrant pickleball community, and free access to tournaments and clinics, The Picklr is elevating the standard for its players and franchise owners. Along with the giveaway, The Picklr recently launched a new brand anthem, a 75-second piece from Tessa Films, capturing eye-popping trick shots, flips, and dinks on film. ”The Pickleball demographic is changing rapidly, and we wanted to create something unique that captures this exciting movement,”, said James Hurlock, the Chief Brand Officer at The Picklr. ”The piece celebrates the athleticism and the multi-generational and diverse pickleball communities The Picklr serves across the country.”

The Picklr announced a significant expansion in September and will be in over 80 locations in 11 states by early 2024. Known for its state-of-the-art facilities, vibrant pickleball community, and free access to tournaments and clinics, The Picklr is elevating the standard for its players and franchise owners.

At The Picklr, pickleball is more than just a sport; it’s a lifestyle that fosters community, competition, and fun. With over eighty state-of-the-art facilities, professional coaching, and a vibrant atmosphere, The Picklr offers an unparalleled pickleball experience for players of all skill levels. All locations offer state-of-the-art professional-grade outdoor surfacing, onsite snacks and drinks, and access to free leagues, tournaments, and clinics. Follow The Picklr on Instagram, XLinkedInFacebook, and TikTok for news on locations and contests, or visit www.thepicklr.com to learn more about owning a franchise.

The Dink is pickleball’s premier media and news outlet. Publishing daily content across its news website, newsletters, podcast network, and social media presence, The Dink covers pickleball’s most compelling stories, tips and strategies, equipment reviews, and highlights for everyone from the most avid pickleball fan to the casual player. Follow The Dink on InstagramXTikTok, and YouTube channels, and visit thedinkpickleball.com for daily pickleball news.

Founded in 2019 by Katy Perry and her sister, Angela Lerche, the Firework Foundation’s mission is to empower children from underserved communities by igniting their inner light through the arts. The Foundation’s programming includes Camp Firework, a sleep away experience in nature where kids can have a safe space to discover their spark through artistic programming and bring that sparkle home to their communities. For more information, visit fireworkfoundation.org.

SOURCE The Picklr


Arizona Athletic Grounds draws over 100,000 Attendees for Presidents Weekend

AAG is the USA’s Premier Youth Athletic Grounds



MESA, Ariz. /PRNewswire/ — Arizona Athletic Grounds (“AAG”) drew well in excess of 100,000 visits over the four days of Presidents weekend. Teams from across the USA including Alaska and Florida participated in 3 tournaments in soccer, volleyball and softball. New ownership provided a positive experience for the guests of AAG. AAG is one of the largest youth-oriented sports and entertainment facilities in North America.

Arizona Athletic Grounds at Mesa Campus (“AAG”)

Locally, Daphne from Arizona said, “For two years we have been attending tournaments and this was by far the best operationally. New ownership has quickly added options for food and comfort stations that made this weekend the best we have seen. AAG has added lots of staff and a great garden party.”

Tim from Portland said, “Volleyball has been the cleanest and biggest of venues we have seen. My daughter is 12 and we will be excited to keep coming back. The DJ is fantastic and we wanted to hang out at Cornhole even after our event was complete.”

Sherrill from Alaska came to watch her granddaughter in a soccer tournament, “AAG is beautiful and the process of attending events was smooth.”

Separately, AAG hosted the Mesa Arizona Cup from February 20-25. Cale, Professional Pickleball Player from Oklahoma said,  “This facility stands out as the best among the six I’ve played at. Without a doubt, it offers unparalleled amenities. Each court provides seating and shade, a rare feature. The parking facilities are exceptional, and if there’s another event here, I’ll definitely return.”

The Mesa facility serves over 4,000,000 visits per year, providing youth and adult athletic and special events programming. The website www.azgrounds.com / @azgrounds are the new landing pages for information. For additional information on rentals, sponsorship, or event programming at AAG, please reach out to the AAG team.

SOURCE Arizona Athletic Grounds

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Oak View Group and Invited also enter strategic partnership
focused on membership benefits and experiences



DENVER /PRNewswire/ — Marking another strategic addition to the company’s premium experience platform, Oak View Group (OVG), the global leader in live experience venue development, venue management, premium hospitality and 360 venue solutions, today announced the acquisition of the Stadium Club division from Invited, the leading owner-operator of private golf, country and city clubs in North America.

As part of the transaction, Oak View Group will own and operate Stadium Club properties at prestigious universities across the country and provide high-end premium experiences and curated member offerings. Management teams and employees will remain in their current roles at all clubs. In addition, Oak View Group and Invited have entered a long-term strategic partnership focused on enhanced membership benefits and uniquely curated experiences for both Invited and OVG club members.

Oak View Group has announced the acquisition of the Stadium Club division from Invited.

Stadium Club properties include:

  • Arizona Sands Club (Arizona Stadium – University of Arizona)
  • Baylor Club (McLane Stadium – Baylor University)
  • Ken Garff University Club (Rice-Eccles Stadium – University of Utah)
  • The Texas Tech Club (Jones AT&T Stadium – Texas Tech University)
  • University Club of Virginia Tech (Lane Stadium – Virginia Tech)
  • The Carolina Club (George Watts Hill Alumni Center – University of North Carolina)

“We are committed to advancing the expectation of a premium experience in venues across the world, and we look forward to welcoming Stadium Clubs and their members into the Oak View Group family,” said Chris Granger, President, OVG360. “We are excited to develop and grow the Stadium Clubs with unique experiences, gracious hospitality and imaginative offerings gleaned from our extensive experience of our own venues and that of our roster of stadiums, arenas, theatres, convention centers and more worldwide. We also look forward to working with our partners at Invited on creating the ultimate membership experience platform for all those in the Invited and OVG families.”

“Invited’s University Stadium Club division has been a source of great pride for the company and through the years we’ve cherished the opportunity to provide an exceptional experience for our members, their families and friends. After many discussions and to ensure a strong and viable future, we’ve decided to sell the stadium club line of business to Oak View Group. Together, we will ensure a seamless transition and Invited will stay involved by partnering on offerings in the future,” said Invited CEO David Pillsbury.

This strategic move expands Oak View Group’s sports venues and commitment to transforming the culinary experience within premium hospitality and live experiences. Last year, Oak View Group acquired Rhubarb Hospitality Collection, an international luxury catering and hospitality provider and partnered with Wally’s Wine & Spirits entrepreneur and wine expert Christian Navarro to curate the gourmet food and beverage experience at OVG venues and launch navarroswine.com with other expansion plans to be announced soon.

The acquisition comes at a time when the entertainment landscape is evolving and Oak View Group remains at the forefront, setting new standards for excellence. Stadium Clubs, known for their premium amenities and exclusive offerings, provides members with game-day experiences along with serving as a premier business and social club and gathering space for the Universities and surrounding community throughout the year. Club members will enjoy increased benefits and access to Oak View Group venue events.

About Oak View Group (OVG)
Oak View Group (OVG) is a global sports and entertainment company founded by Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff in 2015. OVG’s mission is to be a positive disruption to business as usual in the sports, live entertainment, and hospitality industries. OVG is world-renowned as the leading full-service live entertainment and hospitality group, with 10 major new arenas either open or under development including: Climate Pledge Arena at Seattle Center; UBS Arena in Belmont Park, NY; Moody Center in Austin, TX; Acrisure Arena in Greater Palm Springs, CA; and CFG Bank Arena in Baltimore, MD; as well as arena development projects for Co-op Live in Manchester, UK;  Anhembi Arena in São Paulo, Brazil; FirstOntario Centre in Hamilton, ON; a New Arena and entertainment district in Las Vegas, NV; and a New Arena in Cardiff, Wales. OVG360 is a full-service venue management, hospitality solutions, and venue services company servicing more than 400 arenas, stadiums, performing arts centers, culture institutions, and convention centers world-wide. More information at OakViewGroup.com, and follow OVG on FacebookInstagramX, and LinkedIn

About Invited
Since its founding in 1957, Dallas-based Invited has operated with the central purpose of Building Relationships and Enriching Lives®. The leading owner-operator of private golf and country clubs, and city clubs in North America, Invited is relentless in its pursuit of providing extraordinary experiences, meaningful connections, shared passions, and memorable moments for its nearly 400,000 members. With approximately 20,000 peak-season employees and a portfolio of 170 owned golf and country clubs, city clubs, sports clubs, and stadium clubs in 28 states, Invited creates communities and a lifestyle through its championship golf courses, workspaces, handcrafted cuisine, resort-style pools, tennis and pickleball facilities, golf lounges, fitness centers, and robust programming.

Marquee Invited properties include Firestone Country Club (Akron, Ohio); Mission Hills Country Club (Rancho Mirage, California); The Woodlands Country Club (Houston, Texas); and The Metropolitan Club (Chicago, Illinois).

SOURCE Oak View Group

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actors & performers

Remembering Richard Lewis: The Prince of Pain

In memory of Richard Lewis, the Prince of Pain: a comedic maestro known for his neurotic humor and iconic roles. His legacy of laughter and wit will forever resonate in the hearts of fans worldwide. Rest in peace, Richard Lewis.



In the realm of comedy, Richard Lewis stood out as a maestro of neurotic humor, captivating audiences with his frantic, stream-of-consciousness diatribes while clad in his signature all-black attire. Known affectionately as “The Prince of Pain,” Lewis carved a niche for himself in the comedy world, leaving a lasting impact on all who experienced his unique brand of humor.

From AP’s archives: Richard Lewis on working with longtime friend Larry David. The comedian known for his neurotic, stream-of-consciousness act and “Curb Your Enthusiasm” role died Wednesday. He was 76.

With great sorrow, the comedy world bids farewell to this legendary figure as news of his passing at the age of 76 reverberates through the entertainment industry. Lewis, who courageously disclosed his battle with Parkinson’s disease in 2023, passed away at his Los Angeles residence following a heart attack, as confirmed by his publicist Jeff Abraham.

Throughout his illustrious career, Lewis graced comedy clubs and late-night TV shows with his unmistakable presence, enchanting audiences with his quirky humor and endearing vulnerability. His roles as Marty Gold in “Anything But Love” alongside Jamie Lee Curtis and as the neurotic Prince John in “Mel Brooks’ Robin Hood: Men In Tights” showcased his versatility and comedic prowess.

A true comedic icon, Lewis endeared himself to a new generation through his role opposite Larry David in the acclaimed series “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” where he continued to enthrall audiences with his relatable kvetching and sharp wit.

In the words of Richard Lewis himself, “I’m paranoid about everything in my life. Even at home. On my stationary bike, I have a rear-view mirror, which I’m not thrilled about.” His humor was a reflection of his unique perspective on life, filled with wit, charm, and a touch of melancholy.

As we reflect on the legacy of Richard Lewis, we remember a comedic genius who fearlessly bared his soul on stage, leaving audiences in stitches with his hilarious anecdotes and self-deprecating humor. His witticisms and comedic brilliance will forever be etched in the annals of comedy history, ensuring that the Prince of Pain’s legacy lives on in the hearts of all who had the pleasure of experiencing his comedic genius.

Rest in peace, Richard Lewis. Your laughter will echo through eternity, and your memory will forever be cherished by comedy enthusiasts worldwide.

Source: Associated Press



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