Our Pickleball Story
We're the Mann Clann -- Lewis & Roxanne Mann with 7 of our 11 children still at home! We are blessed with 8 boys & 3 girls, ages 32 down to 10. Four of our adult children are married and we have 7 grandchildren so far. This is our 23rd year of homeschooling and we are so grateful for the gift of time this has given to our family unit.
In May of 2012, we were living in Spartanburg, SC. Lewis was working in IT in "corporate America" while the children and I stayed busy with co-op, friends and church. A few weeks after experiencing a grand-mal seizure, Lewis was diagnosed with a brain tumor in his right temporal lobe and referred to Duke University Medical Center in Durham, NC. Our lives were shaken to the core and we reevaluated everything with the looming possibility that Lewis may not make it to retirement to "enjoy life". We purchased a fifth wheel and hit the road as a family to savor each day and try to fulfill as much of our "life list" as we could. We have visited 48 states and 8 Canadian provinces and have countless, precious memories that will last a lifetime!
While wintering in Florida several years ago, we were introduced to the game of pickleball at our RV Park. It was a hit with our family and about half of us began playing for the 3 months we were in Florida. Then in 2020 as covid emerged and lockdowns were implemented, pickleball became a part of our daily routine. Our love and enjoyment of the game grew and we began meeting so many wonderful people. The pickleball community is a lot like the RV community in that it's certainly a friendly, social group and it's easy to make connections! As our sons' passion for the game increased we began "chasing" pickleball tournaments to give them more competitive opportunities to play.
We're currently back in SC due to increasing negative side effects of Lewis's medicines. We've been busy with appointments with all of his medical staff and trying to give him relief from headaches and declining cognitive abilities. Lewis's team at Duke weighed the options and we are all comfortable with the tumor still being in place because the risks are quite high for removal. So as long as the tumor stays stable and we keep seizures "under control", we'll keep striving to enjoy every single day we are blessed to be together. When the weather is cool enough or we find indoor courts, Lewis absolutely enjoys challenging his clann to a fun game of pickleball. But even when Lewis isn't up to playing, you'll find him cheering from the sidelines.
So while our home-on-wheels isn't rolling during this season, one of our sons (Quentin) and I decided to launch Pickleball Tourneys. We want to help build the pickleball community by hosting fun, affordable and competitive tournament play. Since pickleball is the fastest growing sport, we hope to grow this into a family endeavor that I can help run while also being Lewis's primary caregiver and continuing to homeschool 5 children.
Quentin is definitely our most avid pickleball player. He plays multiple times a week and sometimes drives over an hour for higher level play. Quentin is already an entrepreneur by having a resell business pertaining to pickleball equipment & supplies and is a sponsored player plus he also recently entered the process of becoming certified to coach! I expect to continue to see big things from Quentin because he has the drive to drill daily, a real love of this great sport and the passion to help it grow!
Currently we are hosting tournaments in NC, SC, and GA while also looking for other opportunities to direct tournaments anywhere in the southeast. We plan to take our RV to Florida as usual for January, February and March 2023, so please reach out to us if you have suggestions for where tournaments are wanted in the Sunshine State.
Thank you for reading our story! If you're interested in following us personally, find us on Facebook or Instagram at Mann There They Go! We hope to meet you on the court one day soon so you can share your "pickleball story" with our family.
Roxanne (Mama Mann)