We are back in sunny Southern California and we are fired up! Although the pros may not be looking forward to the deep sand of Hermosa, they are excited to be, what the majority of the athletes call, home for the 2019 Hermosa Beach Open. Besides the benefits of not boarding a flight and sleeping in their own beds, the pros are excited to showcase their skills for the big, hometown crowds. And Hermosa, we know you can party!
Whether you’re a local or traveling across the country, a first-time Hermosa Beach Open attendee or a veteran, here is what you need to know before stepping onto the sand:
History and Tournament Info
Although close in location to the AVP Gold Series Manhattan Beach Open, the Hermosa Beach Open has a completely different vibe for the fans and players. Every year from 1984 to 2010, Hermosa Beach hosted an AVP event. After taking a short break, the AVP brought the festival back in 2017 and it’s here to stay.
Tomorrow kicks off the open Qualifiers, and with 190 teams in the draw, it is sure to be a long, competitive day of volley. Friday kicks off the 24-team, double-elimination Main Draw— 16 teams from an automatic bid and 8 teams from the Thursday Qualifiers. Then on Sunday, four athletes, two teams, will raise the trophy.
Fans should just assume there is no parking. We are back in a beach town of volleyball die-hards, and while there is a large parking structure near the Strand, we bet it will fill up by 9am. You can take your chances and arrive early (parking structure takes credit cards), try to get lucky with some street parking (bring quarters and look at street signs), or simply use a Rideshare app (Uber, Lyft, Limo, helicopter etc.).
The beach volleyball festival is back as well— rock climbing wall, food trucks, free samples, kids’ bounce house, soccer darts, jumpman zone, DJ Roueche, and more. Last year, there was no Kona Oasis Beer Tent because of permits, but this year, THERE IS! The Kona Oasis will be located off the Strand near Slater’s 50/50 with views of the outer courts and TVs with Stadium Court views.
AVPFirst National Championship
Along with the pros, the Hermosa Beach Open coincides with the annual AVPFirst National Championships. AVPFirst is the youth, nonprofit arm of the AVP, running high-level youth tournaments throughout the country. Teams have earned their bids all season and will be fighting for the coveted gold medal this weekend. 263 teams will be participating, representing 35 states and five countries including Canada, Mexico, France, and Puerto Rico. Note: Another reason parking will be close to impossible.
Player Party Open To The Public
Saturday night at 7pm the Player Party will be kicking off, and yes, you are invited. The scene will be Tower 12 on Pier Ave, just steps away from the sand. This is your chance to meet the players, hang with the players, and pretend to be a player 😜 Two members of our AVP Family will be DJing and if their gig at NYC’s Player Party was a hint at what’s to come this weekend, we are READY!
Bars and Restaurants
We would love for you to be on the sand with us all day but, we get it, competition ends at 6 and the sun goes down. Here are some favorite bars and restaurants according to the locals (i.e. AVP Staff and pros).
Watermans- This has to be one of the favorite spots for people on tour— fans, pros, and staff. Surprisingly great food for a ‘bar’ and turns into quite the night scene. On a typical weekend, there is a high chance you will see someone from the AVP Family there.
Palmilla– Get the jalapeño margarita! Upscale (well, for a beach town) restaurant and bar with great food and ambiance. Say you are a friend of Johnny and it may help.
Brother’s Burritos– Classic breakfast burrito spot that the pros and staff frequent. Instead of a massive, delicious burrito that falls apart, they are known for all orders coming in two manageable, delicious burritos.
Jus’ Poke– Although not walking distance from the event, Jus’ Poke is only a few years old and just south on PCH. Best poke and portion size in the South Bay!
Underground– An English-style pub that is all about sports— pro sports like basketball on the TVs and amateur sports like beer pong on the tables. Although they close at 1am compared to 2am like the other bars, it’s still worth a visit.
Hermosa Brewery Company– Hermosa Beach’s very own brewery! They do not brew at this location but their craft beer game is strong. They do have limited food options but we recommend this place for beers only.
American Junkie– American Junkie is a chain, one of the largest physical locations on Pier Ave, and has a wheel of fun for guests to spin. Go there if you are looking for a good time with a big group.
Ladies and gents, there is the inside scoop and we can’t wait to see ya on the sand!