Kat Orr, Kelly Westbrook and Robbie McKee pose for a photo at the John Geigle YMCA pickleball courts.

Kat Orr, Kelly Westbrook and Robbie McKee pose for a photo at the John Geigle YMCA pickleball courts. 

Kat Orr, Kelly Westbrook and Robbie McKee are all members of the John Geigle YMCA and have formed a common bond while playing pickleball. The ladies are passionate fundraisers with diverse backgrounds in broadcasting, healthcare marketing and legal counsel. With a goal of wanting to live a healthy lifestyle and build a stronger community in North Pinellas, Kat, Kelly and Robbie are offering their time, talents and treasure to transform the Tennis and Pickleball Complex at the John Geigle YMCA.  

Pickleball is a social sport that allows individuals from varying age groups and skill levels to play together while fostering a sense of community. The game's accessible nature encourages teamwork, communication and friendly competition, all of which are great for building connections and relationships among players.  

This group found their love of pickleball in various paths. After an appointment with her cardiologist, Kat was encouraged to increase her weekly physical activities, so she tried pickleball at our YMCA and was immediately hooked. At the time, Kelly exercised twice a week and is now playing four to five days a week.  

Kelly found out about pickleball from a friend who was visiting from California. Having recently retired and looking for opportunities for friendship and fitness, she found that playing pickleball has been the golden ticket to making new friends.  

Robbie has always made exercise and healthy living a priority. She moved to the Palm Harbor area from Treasure Island, where she went to a Barre/Yoga studio daily for several hours until the Covid lockdown. She had just returned from California, where she learned how to play pickleball and was hooked, so she and her husband Jerry ordered paddles and started playing singles. Pickleball fulfilled her need for both exercise and outdoor activity.  

The ladies' friendship formed over many hours of playing pickleball together several times a week.  

Today, Kat, Kelly and Robbie are spearheading the Dink for Your Heart Pickleball Tournament on February 10th. The proceeds from the tournament will go towards the capital campaign to build four new permanent pickleball courts and transform two courts into a blend of tennis and pickleball. 

You can learn more about the upcoming tournament and how to support the John Geigle YMCA pickleball community today!

Published January 23, 2024