Photo credit: Robert Beck
It will be all sand and fury Aug. 17-20 when the AVP Gold Series hits Manhattan Beach for what is described as “The Wimbledon of Beach Volleyball.” NBC Sports will be on hand Sunday for one of the great spectacles in the beach volleyball world. Not since the 2016 Rio Olympics has such an impressive array of volleyball talent gathered together on one stretch of beach.
Officially called The AVP Gold Series/Manhattan Beach Open Presented by Acer, this five-day spectacle will feature many of the sport’s luminaries. Expected to show their stuff are Phil Dalhausser, Nick Lucena, Jake Gibb, Casey Patterson, April Ross, Lauren Fendrick, Ricardo Santos, Reid Priddy and Xi Zhang, just to name a few.
The AVP (Association of Volleyball Professionals) is a driving force behind the new prominence of beach volleyball. Long past being a simple picnic pastime, the sport of beach volleyball has exploded worldwide. The acceptance of beach volleyball as an NCAA-sanctioned sport is largely due to the efforts of the AVP. The AVP Gold Series is the showcase set of events in the body’s year-long efforts.
“So, do I have to be a pro volleyball expert to attend this event?” Absolutely not! The Manhattan Beach Open is a grand time for everyone from expert volleyballers to sand castle construction artists. This is about the lifestyle that makes beach volleyball and Southern California such a great match! For 56 years this event has shown off the SoCal vibe, and the 57th event will prove to be just as much fun in the sun.
Established in 1983 and currently headquartered in Southern California, the AVP has a 34-year rich history in creating, staging and marketing some of the most innovative and engaging sporting events in North America. They have developed an annual circuit that is not just a sporting event but a lifestyle as well. The AVP has been the home of some of the most respected athletes in professional sports, including gold medalists Karch Kiraly, Kent Steffes, Misty May-Treanor, Kerri Walsh-Jennings, Todd Rogers and the aforementioned Phil Dalhausser. The AVP today is comprised of four divisions: AVP Academy, AVPNext, the AVP Pro Tour and their non-profit 501(c)3 organization, AVPFirst. For more information, visit www.avp.com.