Thousands of volleyball coaches converge on Kansas City
It’s sunrise in St. Augustine, FL and we are going through our checklist for the AVCA National Convention in Kansas City. The 24 foot trailer is packed to the brim with our metallic booth structure, boxes of the hottest jerseys, and cool giveaways. The female voiced GPS device registered a 21 hour drive ahead of us through beautiful country and farm land into and through the states of GA, TN, KY, IL, and MO. The timing had to be just right due to the snowstorm and ice that had just wreaked havoc on the upper Midwest. We were in good hands with our driver/VP Troy navigating curves, road kill and the hills of Kentucky and Tennessee to deliver us to Kansas City in record time. He accomplished this with skill and the assistance of Red Bulls and 5 Hour Energy.
Our first night was spent at the AVCA Casino Night in the KC Marriott Ballroom sponsored by 1st Place Volleyball and Under Armour. The party was packed with around 700 attendees who pulled up to tables and tried their luck at Craps, Blackjack, and Roulette while noshing on prime rib, hors d’oeuvres, cutesy desserts dripping with chocolate sauce and free booze. The big chip leaders traded their winnings in at the end of the night for raffle tickets for prize packages donated by 1st Place Volleyball, AVCA, Under Armour and Zem Gear.
More excitement came the next day when JVA’s President Ron Kordes and Executive Director Jenny Hahn announced our partnership with the JVA organization to sponsor their premier event of the year, The JVA World Challenge in Louisville, KY, April 22-24, 2011. Rox has always believed in the promotion of youth and junior volleyball as it ensures the growth and future of our sport. The partnership is a perfect fit.
The silvery metal Rox booth towering 13 feet in the middle of the convention hall was a site to behold. Bruno Mars and Katy Perry boomed on the booth speakers while gobo lights projected our logos on the structure like the Batman signal. Some of the highlights in the booth were “The Phoenix”, Rox’s newest Roxamation sublimated jersey and Rox backpacks in vibrant new Hawaii Blue and Fuchsia colors.A life- sized graphic of our Rox endorsed athlete, Destinee Hooker was creating buzz among the club and college coaches who walked by.
During the Coaches’ Reception we broke out the Cornhole board game and facilitated some friendly competition among the UCLA Women’s Volleyball Coach and some past members of the US Men’s National Volleyball Team. The exhibit traffic was steady with engaged coaches from the high school, collegiate and club levels and large crowds gathered in the stands to listen to clinics taught by veteran coaches Terry Pettit and Beth Launiere. Also sprinkled in the crowd were famous volleyballers and coaches like Karch Kiraly, Nicole Branagh, and Hugh McCutcheon.