Summer still technically does not begin for more than a month. But the beach volleyball calendar no longer waits for the official start of anything. It’s played year-round, all around the globe. Last weekend delivered any and all evidence one would need.
The AVP’s season debuted in Austin, Texas last weekend – the first under the ownership of Bally’s – where Andy Benesh won his first career event, split-blocking with Phil Dalhausser, and young darlings Kristen Nuss and Taryn Kloth won their second. To the southeast, three American teams were competing in a NORCECA in Varadero, Cuba. To the far east, Sarah Schermerhorn and Corinne Quiggle were fighting to earn a spot in the upcoming Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour World Championships, finishing ninth at a Challenger event in Doha, Qatar.
Weekends like this are soon to be the norm.
Take the weekend of July 20-22 as an example. Beach volleyball will be played in Morocco, Poland, and Belgium. The United States will be hosting a double-serving of beach volleyball, in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
The AVP will feature a Tour Series event, coinciding with AVPAmerica’s Beach Week, annually one of the most popular events on the juniors calendar. Hotels in Atlantic City go remarkably fast, which would make it a wise move to begin booking yours – be it a player, fan, friend, family, or coach – now, if not today.
Book your spot at the Tropicana!
October 8-9, too, is a busy one. While the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour will hit the Red Sea in Egypt, grass players and fans can make the closer trek to the outdoors-loving town of Chattanooga, Tennessee, host of this year’s Grass Nationals. There’s far more to do than simply play or watch grass volleyball in the “aggressively welcoming” town of Chattanooga – although we do hope you do much of both – including hikes, swimming, new restaurants, and vibrant bars.
This season, though it began for many as early as February, goes deep into the fall. The sport has, after all, become synonymous with Endless Summer for a reason. On November 12-13, AVPAmerica will head to Huntington Beach, California for its West Coast Championships, held just down the beach from one of the state’s most iconic sites at the Huntington Beach Pier, home to Casey Patterson’s famed pier bounces. A number of hotels are available.
Book your spot at the West Coast Championships!
Just two weeks later, AVPAmerica will conclude its final major event of the season back east, in Clearwater, Florida, for the East Coast Championships. Per usual, the event will be held at the Sheraton Key, a waterfront hotel that leads directly to the dozens of courts that will be used for the competition.
~ Travis Mewhirter: @trammew