It’s all beach volleyball, all July, even with no AVP Hermosa Open
by Kevin Cody
The Hermosa Beach City Council wasn’t happy with the city staff’s proposed beach volleyball scheduling for 2024, 2025 and 2026. Nor were representatives of the AVP (Association of Volleyball Professionals), and the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union).
“We shoved all the events into July. It’s just too much. The public can’t get to the beach without walking around the courts,” Mayor Justin Massey said.
Councilmember Mike Detoy concurred.
“It’s not fair [to the public] to lock up the whole month of July,” he said.
The staff scheduled volleyball tournaments on the beach for 24 consecutive days in July 2024, and 27 consecutive days in July 2025 and July 2026.
Councilmember Dean Francois objected to the proposed schedule because it meant AVP would not hold the Hermosa Open in 2024 because it couldn’t get a date early enough in July to avoid conflict with the Paris Olympics, which start July 26, 2024.
The tournament organizers weren’t enthusiastic about the schedule either.
AVP CEO Al Lau said the dates proposed by the city staff led AVP to cancel its traditional July Hermosa Open in 2024.
But Lau said he was “okay” with the plan because it will allow AVP to schedule Hermosa Opens in July in 2025 and 2026.
Lau said he had rejected suggestions that AVP schedule the Hermosa Open during a month other than July in 2024 because his dates need to be consistent to be successful.
He said AVP will hold its Hermosa Beach youth beach volleyball tournament in 2024.
AAU National Beach Volleyball Director Denny Lennon told the council his tournament needs a July date both for consistency, and because high school volleyball ends in June and resumes in August.
“But I can swallow this,” he said of the staff’s schedule.
Councilman Raymond Jackson said after the AVP and AAU representatives spoke, “I’m a big fan of your organizations. You have made Hermosa Beach the epicenter of beach volleyball. The schedule’s not perfect. But it’s a start. Both speakers said it’s a plan they can swallow.”
He then proposed the council approve the schedule. It passed 3 to 2, with support from Francois and Councilman Robb Saeman. ER