Bud Light Beer Garden, World-Class Volleyball And 6-Man Make Event A Success
The music pumped all day, the beer flowed, Team Magnum p.i., and Fletch were battling it out for the 6-man championship and there were lots of girls in bikinis and dudes in board shorts.
One could not help but get a flashback to the prime days of the Manhattan Beach 6-man tournament, back when it was one of the country’s best beach parties.
But this was not 6-man but rather the inaugural World Series of Beach Volleyball. It’s a massive volleyball tournament on and around Marina Green in downtown Long Beach and, based on my observations, it has huge beach party potential. It already has surpassed the current 6-man (which is now on a Wednesday and Thursday, July 31-Aug. 1 in 2013) and may one day rival even the massive Over-the-Line in San Diego.
The WSOBV – #WSOBV for those of you on Twitter – also features world-class volleyball in an AVP-type of stadium in a USA vs. the World format. So it’s a combination of everything volleyball. And the grandstands on Saturday were full and the crowd enthusiastic, even if Kerry Walsh Jennings did lose in a three-set thriller. Later, the lively “Rosie’s Raiders” were rewarded with Sean Rosenthal winning the FIBA Grand Slam Gold Medal with partner Phil Dalhausser.
The centerpiece of my activity was the Bud Light beer garden, which has a band and DJ, and lots of fun mingling. You can’t do this in Manhattan Beach or Hermosa Beach, have a beer in hand out in the open and legally. And while you could not take the beer out onto courts, you could get a good view of the 6-man action.
My only disappointment was that I somehow missed the Bud Light bikini contest. There was so much happening – big matches on the stadium court, people watching, letting the Bud Light girl spray paint a temporary tattoo on my arm – that it was impossible to take it all in at the same time.
The first year of WSOBV brought out several thousand people on the weekend and it could be considered a huge success. Oh, and Magnum defeated Fletch for the 6-man title.