This week there was a different kind of launch for Northeastern University – Seattle, which took place in Seattle’s City Hall at high noon before several TV stations and members of the public. The City of Seattle’s Deputy Mayor and City Council President first thanked Northeastern for providing a creative and magnificent addition to a lovely public space in City Hall – a Ping Pong Table!
The gift of this Ping Pong table was very intentional and mindful of the global and local role Ping Pong has played. Pong brings people and nations together, having fun. It was Ping Pong Diplomacy back in 1971 that led to normalization of relations between China and US, a milestone that allowed Seattle in subsequent years to serve as a Gateway to China. Even today, Seattle has one of its local leaders, former Governor Gary Locke, serving as the US Ambassador to China. Here in the Puget Sound region today, startups, tech companies, gamers and researchers of all types all turn to Ping Pong to relieve stress and generate creativity. Given our growing ties with all these companies and love for the game, it was only natural for Northeastern to enter a fun and creative public-private partnership with the City of Seattle. In coming years the Northeastern University – Seattle Ping Pong table in City Hall will allow residents, policymakers and the general public to come together, relax and have good old plain fun in the magnificent setting at City Hall. If YOU want to play, bring a friend and check in at the 5th Floor entrance, where you will get a ball and paddles.
The Battle for Seattle between Councilmember Nick “The Shark” Licata and Tayloe “Big Daddy Ping” Washburn served as the opening match. It was a lot of fun and very challenging for The Shark and Big D, as both players had excellent paddles, a spectacular setting at City Hall, and a table that had never been played on.