Pro Beach Volleyball’s Return to Hermosa Beach is a Return to Local Culture
At least we have pro beach volleyball!
It’s not the AVP and its in September instead of June, July or August, and the top players are elsewhere, but we’ll take it. Southern California culture is revived and survived with the Jose Cuervo/Bud Light Lime Hermosa Beach Open at the Hermosa Beach Pier the weekend of Sept. 23-25, 2011.
The way things are in the South Bay Beach Cities of Hermosa, Manhattan and Redondo Beach, we’ll take our beach volleyball however its served. And this one has the look and feel of the AVP with grandstands, sponsors and Bud Light Lime girls!
Too bad nature didn’t feel quite the same way. The overcast skies all weekend made it feel more like June with the gloom rather than the end of September. As a result, plus the fact that it took place in the fall rather than summer as is usually the case for pro beach volleyball in Hermosa, there was far more buzz in the bars on the weekend than on the sand.
In fact, the bars were rocking on Saturday, though it had a lot more to do with the fact there was not one, but two, LMU pub crawls taking place at the same time and places. These groups jammed the Patrick Molloys and Cafe Boogaloo, among other spots, and the bars responded by playing upbeat party music. At the same time, the Bud Light Lime girls were making rounds at the bars, and they certainly added to the awesome atmosphere.
Sometimes, it’s good to stumble into a lively pub crawl
Sunday afternoon, there was a bit of sunshine just in time for the finals. And that seems to bring people out of the bars for a break from all day watching NFL games.
There was play on courts all day Friday, Saturday (8 a.m.-5 p.m.) with 32 men’s and 32 women’s teams competing. The men’s and women’s final on Sunday were televised live on Versus.
Rosie’s Raiders were on hand – that’s always fun – cheering for local Sean Rosenthal and partner Jake Gibb; they are currently the second-best U.S. team on the international tour. The third-best team, Matt Fuerbringer and Nick Lucena, was also in the tournament. Rosenthal and Gibb made the finals, but lost to Casey Jennings and Pedro Salgado.
On the women’s side, the No. 2 and No. 3 U.S. teams also played, Jennifer Kessy and April Ross – who won the touranament – and Brooke Hanson and Lauren Fendrick.
The event, including grandstand seating for the finals, was free. As previously mentioned the bars along Pier Plaza were busy (mainly with people watching the college and NFL games) thru the Sunday night post-party, which was Sunday night at Sangria.
Wild as always, for volleyball players know how to party.