Paddle Tennis Packed Weekend

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Jesse Irvine, a former professional tennis player, competing at the Venice Beach Paddle Tennis Courts over Cinco de Mayo weekend. Photo by Ted Catanzaro.

Cinco de Mayo paddle tennis action.

by Sam Catanzaro

While many people in Venice were getting dehydrated from margaritas on Cinco de Mayo, competitors in the Venice Beach Paddle Tennis Cinco de Mayo Tournament were doing their best to stay hydrated under the hot sun.

Hosted by the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, this tournament featured both singles and doubles competition over the weekend, and featured some of the world’s best paddle tennis players in action.

Event winners Brian Wan and Russ Garber are one of the nations best doubles team. Photo by Ted Catanzaro.

These included Brian Wan of New York and Russ Garber of Los Angeles. The duo, who are the number two ranked doubles team in the country, competed in the Men’s Doubles event and won. In the semi-finals, Wan and Garber took on the team of Gabriel Joseph and Jessie Irvine. Irvine is a female who used to be a professional tennis player and regularly competes in the male competitions.

“As a female paddle player, it was great to compete in the men’s tournament,” Irvine said. “I’ve been playing paddle for almost a year now and I love it because it’s fast-paced and easy to pick up. Plus it allows me to compete and play with my friends since I can no longer do so in tennis because of an injury.”

Grant Aronson, a Venice local, in action during the Venice Beach Paddle Tennis Cinco de Mayo Tournament. Photo by Ted Catanzaro.

For those who missed the tournament, there is still ample paddle tennis competition lined up for Venice in the coming months. The Summer Singles tournament will take place June 10-11, LA City Doubles July 15-16, US Open National Singles August 19-20 and Venice Beach Mixed Doubles September 9-10. In the meantime, the courts are open to the public and paddle rentals are available to rent from the facility. For more information contact Fred Easley at Venice Recreation and Parks at (310) 399-2775.