Meet Scott Merritt
Pickleball Club News
Today’s article features Scott Merritt, the illustrious former president of our pickleball club. He has served us with candor and diligence through the very challenging period of the pandemic, as well as the very productive and collaborative mission of securing more courts for our pickleball community. He is very proud of the efforts made and says that we are now “in the queue” to see these courts become a reality in the next couple years. Before focusing on the many other accomplishments during Scott’s reign, let’s look more closely at the man, Scott Merritt.
Scott was born in 19?? in Massachusetts, an hour from Boston. At an early age, it was obvious that Scott was a gifted athlete. In high school, he played tennis and was a gymnast. He was always encouraged by his parents to set the bar high, and eventually he earned an athletic scholarship to attend a college in Connecticut. While in school, he worked as a teaching tennis pro at a country club for a couple of years. He played in many tournaments but saw inconsistent results and too many injuries.
Memories of vacations as a youngster always involve camping. At one point, the family took a 30-day-long tour across the country visiting Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Bryce, and Zion National Park.
Scott graduated from Brown University in Rhode Island and became a charter financial analyst. Eleven years ago, he started his own consulting business serving the needs of small business owners who have outgrown the ability to manage their business. They turn to Scott for support. He has been involved in acquisitions as well as sales. Speaking of sales, Scott is the author of the book Growing Sales, which has positive reviews and only one copy remaining on Amazon.
He refers to himself as a student of World War II, claiming to have spent the first couple months of the pandemic watching over 100 documentaries on Netflix and taking online courses in anthropology. As a result, he pridefully calls himself a nerd. Additionally, he has been studying German on and off for four years. Clearly, this man is a life-long learner who says that he is not interesting.
A woman named Harriet walked into a lamp store in Florida. Noticing her, Scott approached and asked if he could help her. He was pretending to work there. Knowing the owner quite well, she quickly stated, “BS! You don’t work here! He would never have hired someone like you!” Hence, the magical beginning of a love affair and marriage that has endured 32 years. Originally an interior designer, Harriet now devotes her passions to her horse and the freedom of riding across the 80-acre ranch with their Brittany Spaniel running at her side. Scott says that he has always had a dog in his life. His stories of the hand-me-up Chihuahua he inherited from his daughter were quite tantalizing and involved unsuccessful coyote attacks.
As for travel, Scott and Harriet have been to every Hawaiian island several times, and Maui is where they enjoy a lovely time-share and make frequent visits. At one time in his life, Scott was an avid scuba diver, with about 275 dives to his credit. In 1995, he endeavored to build a scuba resort in the Marshall Islands with some partners. This was all part of his regular trips through Micronesia, where he had business clients. In fact, most of his dives around the world were connected to his business travels. He no longer has any interest in diving, long flights, or extended hotel stays.
Scott and Harriet moved to Austin, Texas, for a short time and then lived in Las Vegas for five years. Both are not fans of the cold weather, so Las Vegas suited Scott quite well, but the horse ranch was quite the drive for Harriet. Looking for trees and nature brought them here.
Soon after moving to Lake Wildwood in 2017, Scott experienced a very frightening health crisis, which landed him in the hospital for a month. Since then, he has decided not to work so hard and he keeps himself to 25-hour work weeks. He spends a great deal of time with home projects, having purchased a house that needed a lot of work. Harriet warned him but the allure of having a place where both Scott, Harriet and their daughter’s family could live together was too attractive to pass up.
This brings us up to the current day and the accomplishments of this former club president, Scott Merritt. During the past two years, Scott and his many support people have overseen many improvements. We have a new gate access at the Marina Courts, newly reconstructed courts at Meadow Park, an improved court reservation system, and a new hire in Paul Segel, which has dramatically improved court maintenance. We saw clinics, drill sessions, and challenge ladders, all thanks to Nan Spier. As social director, she planned the Summer of Love party, as well as the more recent holiday bash. Our treasurer, Gail Headstrom, was kept busy adding new members to the club roster and managing the profits from two TT&T events. We were able to reopen the courts during Covid because of the safety guidelines that were established by our board and cleared by the Lake Wildwood board, which enabled us to get out and play safely. As mentioned earlier, the plan to increase the number of courts, as well as improve their quality, is a great sign of progress that happened as a result of intense collaboration and compromise between the tennis and pickleball club with the Lake Wildwood Board of Directors and Planning Committee. During these past two years, we have enjoyed a renewed sense of camaraderie with our fellow tennis friends that is refreshing and positive.
Before closing, I want to share what Scott Merritt hopes to achieve in the future. His goal is to win a championship at Nationals, in Singles, in the Over 90 age group. He says that although he can’t beat most of them now, he hopes to outlive them and take the title! Pickleball is his “golden ticket” to living to 100. Scott, you are one of a kind!
Do you feel that summer is just racing along? So do us at the Rotary Club of Penn Valley. And school has already begun. Our club members are so generous! When asked to donate school…
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