EHS Ping Pong Club gains unexpected clout

EHS students add “fun” to their distinguished lists of extracurricular activities


Gillian Mousseau

Ping Pong Club is inclusive and will accept any members regardless of previous experience.

A few years ago, Edina High School students started Ping Pong Club to socialize with friends and play a game they enjoyed. Last year, sophomores Cole Statz and Eric Smith joined Ping Pong Club with some of their friends. However, at the end of last year, many of the former Ping Pong Club leaders and members graduated. Cole Statz and Erik Smith took the responsibility of leading Ping Pong Club during the 2018-2019 school year.   

Cole Statz’s interest in ping pong began while playing at home with his dad 5 years ago. “It started out as something fun to do on Fridays after school; it was just me and my friends playing ping pong,” Statz said. Smith’s interest in ping pong started at the activities fair when he saw some friends join the club and thought it looked fun. After Statz’s and Smith’s first year in Ping Pong Club, they developed a community of ping pong players that turned into good friends. Statz and Smith wanted to continue this and offer the same experience to new students. In order to do this, both needed to take on leadership roles to ensure the continuity of the club they and their friends enjoy so much.

Ping Pong Club was established when students got Mr. Díaz to agree to keep ping pong tables and advise students in his room after school. As the years went on, Ping Pong Club maintained popularity among students: “It’s a pretty chill club compared to others like Speech and Debate. [During Ping Pong Club] you can come whenever you want and hang out with your friends,” Statz said. “[Last year] there were about 40 people on the first day and then it dwindled down to seven people who stayed the whole year,” Smith said. The club’s numbers grew significantly this year with a record 120 sign-ups at the activities fair and around 60 people who attended the club’s first meeting. “I had a bunch of friends who were in the club, so I decided to join. Plus, it seems pretty fun. I’ve heard other people say they had a fun time going,” sophomore Andrew Mendez said.

With the rapid growth of Ping Pong Club, the leaders had to make some changes. “It is a lot more structured this year. We are making T-shirts, we set up a better activities fair table, and better leadership,” Smith said. For the future of Ping Pong Club, the club leaders both agree that with the increased freshman sign-ups this year, the club will be able to continue with more members for many years to come. The club meets Fridays after school in room E140.