Make us your home page
Instagram

Beach volleyball tournament coming to St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — Downtown St. Petersburg 2013 is a long way from the 2012 Olympics in London, but fast-moving, crowd-pleasing beach volleyball will soon link the cities. The Association of Volleyball Professionals has chosen Vinoy Park as the site of one of five tournaments in its upcoming Pro Beach Volleyball Tour.

Organizers estimate that 30,000 people will be on hand to watch professionals such as gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings compete in the sand Sept. 13-15, according to Mario Farias, the local consultant who courted the AVP on behalf of the city.

"All the best players in the world will be here, including American players, of course, since we won all the medals in the Olympics," he said.

Six temporary courts will be built to professional standards in Vinoy Park. The center court will seat 5,000 to 10,000 people, while five others will hold 500 to 1,000 fans, said Farias, managing director of Farias Marketing Group.

The final matches of the tournament will be broadcast on national television. Farias and Chris Steinocher, head of the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, declined to say which network will air the event until the AVP makes its official announcement in coming weeks.

"It's a national network with three letters," Farias said, hinting strongly that the tournament and views of St. Petersburg will be aired on ABC, CBS, NBC or Fox.

"It's another one of those world class events (like the Grand Prix). It will give us that opportunity to showcase our waterfront," Steinocher said.

The audience for beach volleyball is wider than that for auto racing, Farias said.

City spokeswoman Beth Herendeen and Kevin Smith, director of the St. Petersburg/Clearwater Sports Commission, also called the tournament a big coup for the city.

While it seems a done deal, the AVP hasn't applied for or received permits from the city.

The four other host cities are Salt Lake City, Cincinnati, and Santa Barbara and Huntington Beach, both in California.

The tournament will have 18 two-person male teams and 18 two-person female teams There will be slots for a local, amateur male and female team to qualify.

Welsh Jennings and partner Misty May-Treanor helped fuel the surge in the sport's popularity last summer when they won their third consecutive gold medal in London. Nielsen reported that 29 million people watched their final match.

Times researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report.

Beach volleyball tournament coming to St. Petersburg 05/01/13 [Last modified: Thursday, May 2, 2013 12:03am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Federal agencies demand records from SeaWorld theme park

    Tourism

    ORLANDO — Two federal agencies are reportedly demanding financial records from SeaWorld.

    Killer whales Ikaika and Corky participate in behaviors commonly done in the wild during SeaWorld's Killer Whale educational presentation in this photo from Jan. 9. SeaWorld has been subpoenaed by two federal agencies for comments that executives and the company made in August 2014 about the impact from the "Blackfish" documentary. 
[Nelvin C. Cepeda/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS]
  2. Legalized medical marijuana signed into law by Rick Scott

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed into law a broader medical marijuana system for the state, following through on a promise he made earlier this month.

    Gov. Rick Scott signed legislation on Friday that legalizes medical marijuana in Florida.
  3. Line of moms welcome Once Upon A Child to Carrollwood

    Business

    CARROLLWOOD — Strollers of all shapes and sizes are lined up in front of the store, and inside, there are racks of children's clothing in every color of the rainbow.

    At Once Upon A Child, you often as many baby strollers outside as you find baby furniture and accessories. It recently opened this location in Carrollwood. Photo by Danielle Hauser
  4. Pastries N Chaat brings North India cuisine to North Tampa

    Business

    TAMPA — Pastries N Chaat, a new restaurant offering Indian street food, opened this week near the University of South Florida.

    The menu at Pastries N Chaat includes a large variety of Biriyani, an entree owners say is beloved by millions. Photo courtesy of Pastries N Chaat.
  5. 'Garbage juice' seen as threat to drinking water in Florida Panhandle county

    Water

    To Waste Management, the nation's largest handler of garbage, the liquid that winds up at the bottom of a landfill is called "leachate," and it can safely be disposed of in a well that's 4,200 feet deep.

    Three samples that were displayed by Jackson County NAACP President Ronstance Pittman at a public meeting on Waste Management's deep well injection proposal. The sample on the left is full of leachate from the Jackson County landfill, the stuff that would be injected into the well. The sample on the right shows leachate after it's been treated at a wastewater treatment plant. The one in the middle is tap water.