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What is pickleball? It's a sport that's played with a paddle, and it has its share of Ventura County fans. Ventura County Star

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Attention, competitive eaters. A new food challenge has arrived.

During the entire month of April, visitors at Smash Park in West Des Moines can chow down on the Big Blue Food Challenge — featuring a five-pound Italian Meat Sandwich.

The sandwich is stacked with salami, mortadella, coppa, ham, provolone, mozzarella, truffle mayo and olive tapenade on Italian bread ($39). If you can finish the sandwich, the sandwich is free and you also get a free T-shirt (and possibly indigestion).

Interested in Iowa food news? Follow @briantaylorcarlson on Facebook, @BriinDSM on Twitter and @briindsm on Instagram.

And for a limited time, the park will offer its 192-ounce Moscow Mule in a special Big Blue-inspired flavor ($92). Sharing is recommended.

    Smash Park can now call itself home to the largest pickleball paddle in the world, named Big Blue, giving both pickleball and world-record enthusiasts something to be proud of.

    The paddle will be celebrated during the entire month of April — National Pickleball Month. Along with Big Blue-themed food and drink specials at the in-house restaurant at 6625 Coachlight Drive, Court 7 Munchery, a local celebrity bragging-rights challenge will begin at 10 a.m. on Sunday, April 14.

    The massive paddle, which is more than 10 times larger than a traditional paddle at 13.6 feet tall and 6.9 feet wide, has been officially certified by Guinness World Records.

    ► More: West Des Moines' Smash Park holds record for world's largest pickleball paddle

    “When my husband and I were creating the vision for Smash Park, we wanted to put the Des Moines-area on the map as a pickleball and entertainment destination,” said Kerri Lockyear, vice president and co-owner of Smash Park with husband Monty. “We are committed to making a big impact, and I guess we’re achieving that both figuratively and literally. Big Blue is another opportunity to draw attention to the fun and growing sport of pickleball, which people in the Des Moines metro are really embracing.”

    All Smash Park events are open to the public and a portion of sales on April 14 will be donated to Children and Families of Iowa. More information, including a Big Blue FAQ and photos, can be found at www.smashpark.com/big-blue.

    Smash Park opened in the fall of 2018 and offers central Iowa’s first dedicated pickleball facilities.

    The 47,000-square-foot venue features seven indoor and outdoor pickleball courts, a fast-casual restaurant featuring chef-crafted street food, a creamery with ice cream and boozy shakes, three indoor and outdoor bars with 46 TVs, indoor games and a 17,000 square-foot patio and beer garden with shuffleboard, bocce ball and yard games.

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      Read or Share this story: https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/entertainment/dining/2019/04/12/smash-park-5-pound-italian-meat-sandwich-food-eating-challenge-west-des-moines-iowa-pickleball/3450380002/