First-of-its-kind event will take place January 3-7 at Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Indiana; Signature event features college teams from across the country competing in a unique new team format for $50,000* in prize money; Registration will open September 14 on PickleballBrackets.com
CHICAGO (SEPTEMBER 12, 2023) -- The Association of Pickleball Players (APP) announced today its first APP Signature Event of its 2024 calendar, the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open, held January 3-7 at Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Indiana. This event, the first of a multi-year partnership, will mark one of the largest pickleball events ever in the state of Indiana and is presented in partnership with Westfield Sports Commission, Hamilton County Sports Authority, Hamilton County Tourism, Indiana Sports and Tourism Bid Fund, and Grand National Racquet Center, a world-class racquet facility in development in Westfield and opening in 2025.
The first competition of its kind, the nationally-televised 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships will invite the top college pickleball teams from across the nation to showcase their skills in head-to-head competition. Each team will be comprised of a minimum of four players (two women and two men) and a maximum of six players (three women and three men) and take part in a unique new team competition. Matches from pool play through the finals will be rally scoring, win by one, and consist of singles, doubles, and mixed doubles. Scoring will follow the “Every. Pickle. Point. Counts.” scoring system where scoring for match wins is cumulative, with points bonuses for games won. Under this scoring system, every game and every point matters.
College teams wishing to enter the tournament are asked to register their intention to field a team via theapp.global. Full registration details for all college teams confirmed to take part will be shared at a later date by the APP.
Alongside the 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships, the APP will hold the APP Midwest Open for players of all ages and skill levels. The event will also feature a pro wildcard playoff, guaranteeing pro champions a wildcard entry into a designated 2024 APP Tour event. The amateur brackets will follow the traditional APP double-elimination format for singles, doubles, and mixed doubles competitions. Amateur and wildcard pro player registrations for the event will open September 14 on PickleballBrackets.com.
The 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open will take place at the 400-acre Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, located 30 miles north of Indianapolis and named the fastest growing city in the state of Indiana. Grand Park Sports Campus is home to the Pacers Athletic Center, serves as the training camp home for the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts, and boasts 57 outdoor fields for soccer, football, lacrosse, baseball, and softball.
“I am so excited to see the vision come to reality with the launch of this event with the APP and such a terrific group of committed partners,” commented John Moorin, Founder, MD Sports Marketing. “When I first talked to Ken Hermann [APP Founder] about the idea to bring collegiate pickleball to Westfield, I knew I called the right person. I have many unforgettable memories playing in APP events and I am so happy to help create that same excitement for the college athletes who will compete in this great, nationally-televised event. It’s going to be incredible!”
Grand Park Events Center, a 377,000-square-foot facility will be transformed to a pickleball mecca for the APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open, featuring 28 pickleball courts and a Championship Court, as well as stadium seating with visibility of all courts, VIP seating, player locker rooms, and a large bar and restaurant overlooking play.
“We are excited to host the 2024 APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open here at Grand Park Sports Campus in its inaugural year and for years to come! The addition of pickleball to the campus continues to show how we can utilize the facility for a variety of sports.” said Matt Trnian, Grand Park Director.
“We are thrilled to be heading to Westfield for our first APP Signature Event of 2024, the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open,” said APP Founder Ken Herrmann. “This event is a special one – it's the first of its kind to feature college-level pickleball teams battling it out for gold and it kicks off our long-term efforts in the collegiate space. You will see exponential growth in college pickleball in 2024, with new events by the APP, and at colleges and universities across the country. We are excited to help fuel this growth and put on a world-class tournament for college players, and everyone who takes part.”
Matt Deck, Westfield Sports Commission President, noted “the Westfield Sports Commission could not be more excited about our first official event and the beginning of a long-lasting relationship with the APP!”
“I am thrilled to welcome the Association of Pickleball Players and all participants to the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open at Grand Park Sports Campus”, said Westfield Mayor, Andy Cook. “This event marks a significant milestone for our city, showcasing our commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles and fostering community through sports. We are honored to host this prestigious event and look forward to witnessing the passion and talent of pickleball players nationwide.”
“The Hamilton County Sports Authority team looks forward to welcoming the APP for this innovative and exciting new event highlighting both collegiate and open play,” said Hamilton County Sports Authority Director Carl Daniels. “It’s tremendous to see the platform the APP provides for pickleball players of all skill levels. Our team is excited to create a memorable experience in our destination for all these athletes.”
"I am excited to join the celebration of athleticism and sportsmanship that the APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open bring to our city”, stated Scott Willis, Westfield’s Mayor Elect. “I congratulate the APP for organizing this event and thank them for choosing Westfield as the host location. This is a first for Grand Park and an expansion of sporting events at the park. I am eager to support and continue building upon initiatives that enhance our community's quality of life and promote the spirit of competition."
* subject to official rules and eligibility
About the APP
Founded in 2019, the Association of Pickleball Players (APP) serves professionals, amateurs and recreational players of all ages in the fastest growing sport in the USA. The APP operates the APP Tour, the first and only tour fully and officially sanctioned by USA Pickleball. The 2023 APP Tour slate has 16 announced tournament stops, in addition to International and Collegiate Series events. The APP also prides itself on developing the next generation of pickleball champions through its Next Gen Series, the Next Gen National Team, and other youth initiatives. To stay tuned on additional updates, visit theapp.global and the APPâs social media channels Instagram, X, Threads, TikTok, Facebook and LinkedIn.
About Hamilton County Sports Authority
Hamilton County Sports Authority (HCSA), a division of Hamilton County Tourism, creates positive economic and community impact by attracting, supporting and developing sporting events, facilities and clubs for Hamilton County, Indiana.
About the Westfield Sports Commission
The Westfield Sports Commission (WSC) is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization that was formed in 2023 to grow sports tourism in the City of Westfield. WSC attracts, supports, and leverages diverse, high-quality sporting events to positively impact the quality of life, image, and long-term economic stability of the community.
The Association of Pickleball Players
City of Westfield
Westfield Sports Commission
Hamilton County Sports Authority