In 2016, an architect working with the US Open Pickleball Championships contacted USA SHADE with a need and an idea sketched on a napkin. The architect had been hired to do a feasibility study for the US Open Pickleball Championship, a court-based paddle sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong.
After extensive research, the architect was convinced that USA SHADE was the only company that could design and build the type of shade structure the tournament envisioned on their tight timeline. Following a phone conversation with USA SHADE Architectural Specialist Haley Maitre and sharing the architect’s napkin sketch, USA SHADE was awarded the contract in December 2016, and the structure’s installation was completed in April 2017.
The previous year, the courts in Naples, FL, were so hot that only 20 people sat in the stands to watch the final game of the US Open. After adding USA SHADE’s custom structure, the stands at the 2017 US Open were filled to capacity with approximately 200 fans at every match. This one-of-a-kind, fully custom structure has become both a destination and an event — it will be used to host tournaments throughout the year and has become the new home of the US Open Pickleball Academy.