Daily Archives: January 16, 2009

BI’s special election bill passes committee

Doubts about Bainbridge Island’s special elections bill were eased yesterday with its passage out of a House committee. Read about it in today’s story by Keith Vance, our man in Olympia.

The bill would free Bainbridge and other cities from hold special change-of-government elections only during November, when general election ballots go out.

While yesterday’s action was only the first step, some islanders – including Rep. Christine Rolfes, the bill’s prime sponsor – didn’t think such a relatively minor piece of legislation would have much of a chance during a year when the state’s economy is likely to dominate discussion. The provision listing the bill as an “emergency” was also seen by some as a bit presumptuous, especially in light of the state’s flooding highways, crumbling viaducts, faltering support for schools and plans to close parks.

Already exceeding expectations, the bill may yet put a special ballot in your mailbox in May, rather than November.

The doggone lies about pickleball

The San Francisco Chronicle is the latest media outlet to repeat the tall tales about the origins of pickleball, the sport that put Bainbridge Island on the map.

If you’re a true Bainbridge Islander then you already know the story. For those of you who don’t (Californians, I’m talking to you. You too, Bellevuians, cowering in the back row), pickleball was invented on Bainbridge by Congressman Joel Pritchard and a few of his buddies during the summer of 1963 (according to Joel Pritchard and co-founder Bill Bell), or 1966 (according to Joel Pritchard’s wife, Joan) or 1965 (according to everyone else). That first pickleball court remains shrouded in moss and vines here on Bainbridge. It’s a magic place. When the vines are parted, a chorus of angels can be heard and the court glows with an otherworldly iridescence.

The Chronicle, in a recent article about pickleball, got many facts lined up straight.

Except one.

The sport was NOT named after the family dog.

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