We were delighted to be asked to participate in the Party in the Park in Heavitree at the weekend - although I think there were a few confused looks when we turned up with our table tennis equipment and some pop-up tennis sets. Not a football in sight...
Although football is, of course, primarily what we do, it's important for us to try and reach as many people as possible through sport and we have to understand that not everybody can - or wants to - play football. As the charitable arm of Exeter City FC, we work with the club to get people in the local community - and, in fact, Devon-wide - involved in physical activity for all the physical, mental and social benefits it brings.
Which is why we turned up in Heavitree carrying rather smaller balls than usual and it was great to see both children and their parents getting involved in the fun - around 50 kids played tennis on the day. With relaxed sessions like this, people can have a go at new sports without feeling under any pressure to have the right gear or the worry about getting things wrong - everyone is welcome to try (and, without exception, everyone loves table tennis).
We can't wait for the launch later this month of Exeter's "Ping City" status. There will be tables around the city where people can just have a go - maybe while they are out shopping, or on a lunch break from work. We also run a Hub Club here at St James Park.
We will also be running special tennis and table tennis days as part of our summer holiday courses this year - for more information, click here.