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Spotlight: Burns & McDonnell Teams

By | Blog

Looking for the perfect place to have fun with co-workers while building teamwork and communication skills at the same time? Look no further than Volleyball Beach! Several local and national companies in Kansas City have one or more employee teams participating in league play at Volleyball Beach. Recently we spoke with Rachel Gatling from Human Resources at local engineering firm Burns & McDonnell about how playing on a team with coworkers has led to positive impact in the workplace.

Burns & McDonnell Teams

Rachel first got involved with Volleyball Beach three years ago when she played on a team with friends and acquaintances. She enjoyed it so much that she decided it might be fun to get some of her co-workers involved. One thing led to another and now Volleyball Beach is happy to host a total of five teams made up of Burns & McDonnell colleagues!

According to Rachel, individual teams from Burns & McDonnell typically include members of a specific department – but they even have a team made up exclusively of their interns! Rachel said that playing on teams at Volleyball Beach has made a significant impact in the work ethic and teamwork in the office. According to Rachel, “Playing at Volleyball Beach is definitely great exercise and a way to get to know each other better. It’s also been fun to hang out socially and catch up at Happy Hour before games.”

We all know that 9-5 work can be tough, but we can’t think of a better way to end the day than by leaving the desk (and work shoes!) behind and putting your toes in the sand at Volleyball Beach! What’s not to like about blowing off a little steam by spiking the ball for a win – and then relaxing on our beachside deck with one of our many fresh-made cocktails in hand while sharing a plateful of appetizers with your favorite coworkers?!

New leagues are forming soon, so rally a few coworkers, form a team, and share some great times outside of the office at KC’s one and only Volleyball Beach!

Wanting to stage an extra special workday-getaway? Volleyball Beach can host your company’s own “skip day” most any Monday through Friday. Don’t let anyone “beach” you to it – book your event now! Click here to send us a message to learn more and reserve your date!

 

Fall League Registration begins July 20th!

By | Blog

Summer leagues may be coming to an end, but the fun doesn’t stop at Volleyball Beach! It’s time to rally together your crew and get ready to plant your toes in the sand with a volleyball in hand as online registration for fall sessions begins Friday, July 20, 2018 promptly at 9:00 AM!

Please note – our fall sessions will fill up fast! Current Summer League teams have until Monday, July 16, 2018 to reserve their spots. Fall League play begins Wednesday, August 15, 2018, with play Sundays through Fridays and sessions starting as early as 5:00 PM continuing into late evening sessions that start at 10:15 PM.

(Please note, after Fall Leagues are completed, “Winter Digs” in the dome is completely “first come, first serve” with no held session reservations.)

Not enough members in your crew – or looking to join a team and make some new friends? Check out our Find a Player page!

Don’t forget to join us for Free Play and Happy Hour at the Beachside Bar and Grill weekdays from 4:00-6:00 pm! We have a delicious selection of great eats – from nachos to pizza and everything in between. In need of a refreshing cocktail or ice-cold beer? Our resident mixologists take pride in their craft and are happy to help you quench your thirst. Also, be on the look-out for Howard’s Hydration Libations – specials on drinks when it is 90 degrees or hotter!

Drink Local at KC’s Beachside Bar!

By | Blog

At Volleyball Beach we’re all about celebrating and supporting local businesses! That’s why we’re proud to offer our customers a variety of Kansas City brewed beers and distilled spirits! Let’s take a peek behind the counter of KC’s one and only Beachside Bar and learn more about the history of the local beverage selections offered.

Martin City Brewing CompanyWith a simple proposal between two friends, Martin City Brewing Company came to life. Originating as a brewpub right here in Martin City, Martin City Brewing Company now consists of not only a brewpub, but also a Pizza restaurant, Taproom as well as hosting its namesake Brewery. Why not try Martin City Hard Way IPA – described as “an American Style IPA with a touch of toasted malt flavor which accents the hops with citrus flavors and aromas coming from the triple dry hopping.” Dee-lish!

KC Bier Co: The mission of KC Bier Co is to bring the authentic flavor of German-style bier back to the United States. Opening in 2014, Kansas Citians have embraced the added diversity KC Bier Co has brought to the table. Dunkel is a locally known favorite from KC Bier and Volleyball Beach is excited for our customers to give it a try! Described as a “full-bodied, brown, Munich-style lager with low bitterness and rich toasted-bread-crust and caramel malt flavors,” Dunkel is now one of KC’s most sought-after beers! Take our word for it and switch up your normal Beachside Bar order now and again with KC Bier Co’s Dunkel – you won’t be disappointed!

Tom’s Town Distilling Co: Drawing its name and inspiration from KC’s own “Boss” Tom Pendergast – best known as one of the country’s most corrupt and polarizing political bosses – Tom’s Town is the first legal distillery in downtown Kansas City since Prohibition. “The people are thirsty,” is the motivation behind Tom’s Town and Volleyball Beach would have to second that! Expand your palate with Tom’s Town Pendergast’s Royal Gold Bourbon! Enjoy the rich warmth and, “aromas of caramelized sugar, pleasant oak and stone fruits.” It’s a Beachside Bar game changer!

S.D. Strong Distilling: Located in Parkville, Missouri, S.D. Strong Distilling is the only know distillery located in a cave – 65 feet underground to be exact! Distilling spirits in a cave ensures a one of a kind flavor experience as the temperature and weather conditions never vary. Give it a try yourself! Next time you order your favorite mixed drink, ask your bartender to substitute S.D. Strong Vodka – “an extraordinary vodka that is as smooth as it is strong.” Now that’s something we can all rally behind!

Thirsty yet? Rest assured, we’ve got a local adult beverage available to please just about every taste! After you work up a sweat on the sandy courts, grab a seat with your teammates and cool down with the local offerings of our Beachside Bar!

Bumping, Setting and Spiking for a Cause

By | Blog

What’s better than spending a day in the sun and sand while raising money for a great cause? It’s at trick question, there’s nothing else we can think of – especially if the event is the Dig City KC charity volleyball tournament hosted by Phoenix Family and Trent Green right here at Volleyball Beach!

Trent Green and Volleyball Beach’s own, Howard Barewin!

The day was full of sunshine and smiles as former Kansas City Chief and current National Sports Broadcaster, Trent Green, and 30+ teams competed for a shot in the Dig City KC championship game! Unfortunately for Green, the former All-Pro Chiefs Quarterback, he and his team didn’t walk away with the title but, with their help, nearly $1,000 was raised for their beneficiary, HIKE (Help Instill the Key to Education).

The mission of HIKE is to, “provide low-income children individualized reading instruction to improve their literacy, leading to greater success in school and increased opportunities in life.” With the help of Trent Green, HIKE is part if the change these kids need to improve their lives. If you weren’t able to attend Dig City KC this year and still want to support the cause, it’s not too late to contribute. Click here for more information!

Check the Volleyball Beach calendar to see other charity events scheduled at here at Beach – and also dates that remain available should your organization want to host a fundraiser. In addition to Phoenix Family, Volleyball Beach has hosted volleyball tournaments for many of KC’s amazing charities including: Rose Brooks, Special Olympics, Susan G. Komen, Sherwood Center, Big Brothers Big Sisters and many, many more.

Don’t let anyone “beach” you to it – join in on the fun and book your charity event today! Volleyball Beach facilities are available weekdays and most Saturday and Sundays for summer tournaments and other special events. Click here to reserve your date!

Click here to see more pictures from this awesome charity tournament!

Beach Spotlight: Weather Guru Mike Russell

By | Blog

Who is Mike Russell? According to Volleyball Beach proprietor Howard Barewin, “Mike Russell is a longtime player and Volleyball Beach fan – and our very own ‘Weather Guru’! When we get it right, it’s all Mike. When we get it wrong, it is all me!”

Mike first got involved with Volleyball Beach back in 1989 when he and other members of the Junior Chamber of Commerce put together a team at Volleyball Beach. Before then, Mike said he didn’t have much concrete knowledge of sand volleyball and all that comes with it. Almost 30 years later, it’s safe to say that once Mike started he was hooked!

Mike’s interest in weather and sand volleyball collided about five years after he started playing at Volleyball Beach. When arriving for a game he found all remaining night sessions had been cancelled because of approaching thunderstorms. Mike, a software engineer, was curious and decided to take a look at the weather radar himself. Studying the radar, Mike predicted the storms would be out of the area in time for 7:15 games to be played. It turns out Mike was absolutely correct!

Kansas City’s unpredictable weather had long made deciding to play or cancel an evening’s games a tricky proposition. With a prognosticator like Mike around, it didn’t take the former Volleyball Beach owner long to ask Mike if he wouldn’t mind helping make the call on weather cancellations on a regular basis. Mike said he’d be happy to lend a hand. Now, over twenty years – and one owner – later, Volleyball Beach is still proud to have the services of Kansas City’s one and only outdoor volleyball weather guru!

Mike has always had an interest in the weather. In fact, being a weather forecaster was one of his top three career choices growing up! Ultimately, Mike chose a career with Garmin as a software engineer, but he never stopped pursuing his love of predicting the weather. Over time, he learned weather behaviors by monitoring the metro area with the use of weather models, radar and satellite – online tools all available to the public through the National Weather Service.

“No one can tell you exactly what’s going to happen in the next two or three hours in real dynamic weather situations, but you can get to better than an 80% accuracy level which is still useful,” Mike says.

Monitoring and making a call on the weather is a very time-sensitive endeavor. Mike said he and Howard communicate throughout the day, checking weather models and the radar hourly. According to Mike, “Howard is very intent on not having people show up when we’re going to have a weather problem.”

By the time 4:00 pm rolls around, the two can come to an “executive decision” on whether the games will be cancelled or playable for the night.

Although weather can be unreliable, Volleyball Beach is extremely thankful to have the extremely reliable Mike Russell on our side! Thanks to Mike, thousands of extra matches have been played over the years that otherwise would have been cancelled and, on countless other nights, hundreds of players avoided the trip to Martin City only to be met with a torrent of inclement weather.

So, the next time the sun bursts through dark clouds and the perfect night for sand volleyball emerges, after the game, take a moment and have a toast to Mike. Thanks to him, the game is on!

From everyone here at Volleyball Beach, thank you for all that you do, Mike!