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AVP Weekend Brings Volleyball, Yoga, 'Moana' and More

Aug 16, 2017 05:56PM ● By Jeanne Fratello

Lane Carico of Manhattan Beach makes a play on the ball. Photo credit: AVP-Kohjiro Kinno.

For beach volleyball lovers, it's one of the best weekends of the year: The 58th Annual AVP Manhattan Beach Open rolls into town this weekend, with festivities starting on Thursday, August 17.

The tournament is the longest running continuous event in the sport, and has become known as the "Wimbledon of beach volleyball." Throughout the weekend, world-ranked beach volleyball players will battle it out on the sand to earn the right to have their names enshrined on the pier.

For the past week, workers have been constructing a giant stadium south of the Manhattan Beach Pier where the center of the action will take place.

The weekend's festivities will begin at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday with the Walk of Fame Pier Ceremony for the 2016 Manhattan Beach Open champs Emily Day, Brittany Hochevar, Jake Gibb, and Casey Patterson.

Following the ceremony, the Downtown Manhattan Beach Business and Professionals Association is hosting a "Sunset Beach Party" at the AVP Stadium Skydeck from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Friday will begin bright and early with "Sunrise Yoga" by Katrina Scott starting at 6:45 a.m. at the Skydeck.

On Friday night, beachgoers can enjoy a free showing of "Moana," sponsored by the City of Manhattan Beach and Nikau Kai Waterman, in the center stadium. Music will begin at 6:30 p.m., followed by a 7:00 p.m. raffle and a 7:15 showing of the movie. Attendees are urged to bring picnic blankets, beach chairs, and snacks.

Throughout the weekend, the volleyball is guaranteed to be world-class. The Manhattan Beach Open is part of the new "Gold Series" (the other two locations being the New York City Open and the Chicago Championships), with a prize purse of $225,000. As the second tournament of the 2017 Gold Series and the last of the four California tournaments, the MBO is going “old school” this year with a 32-team format, double that of all the previous events on the schedule. It will be the biggest field of the season with matches on nine courts.

The stadium will also feature food and drink, a DJ, a "sponsor village," and special VIP seating and lounges.

Those who will be driving their cars to the event are urged to remember that there will be several street closures and parking will be limited. Manhattan Beach Boulevard will be closed west of Ocean Avenue through Wednesday, August 23rd. During event hours (Thursday, August 17th, starting at 8:00 AM through Sunday, August 20th, at 6:00 PM), Manhattan Beach Boulevard will be closed west of Manhattan Avenue, and Ocean Drive will be closed from 11th Street to 12th Street.

There will be a free public shuttle running from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from the Manhattan Village Field (1300 Park View Avenue, west of Manhattan Country Club). The Manhattan Village Field parking lot will be open and free to all users (subject to availability). The shuttle will run continuously, with approximately 20 to 25 minutes to complete a loop. The drop off location will be on Valley Drive south of Manhattan Beach Boulevard.

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