2010 AVCA Convention Sets Another Record
LEXINGTON, Ky. (December 22, 2010) - The American Volleyball Coaches Association turned in yet another record week during its 2010 Annual Convention and Volleyball Marketplace held in the Kansas City Convention Center in Kansas City, Mo., Dec. 15-19. After growing by almost 15 percent the year before in Tampa, the event grew another four percent in 2010. Over 1,700 volleyball coaches and more than 300 vendors gathered for a week made special by the NCAA Division I Women's Championship, Josten's Coaches Honors Luncheon, the AVCA All-America/Players of the Year Banquet presented by Zamst, and the Under Armour All-America Volleyball Match and Skills Challenge.
Beside celebratory events, much knowledge was exchanged and business conducted as representatives from every volleyball leadership group in the nation and volleyball suppliers from around the globe gathered to share ideas, debate future directions, and explore new opportunities.
In another exciting development, the 2010 Convention also saw a record number of international attendees. Numerous coaches and vendors from Poland, Brazil, Italy, England, Canada, France, Uganda, Japan and China were on hand to share stories and show products.
The week began with the announcement that Baden Sport, Inc. was joining the AVCA as its newest corporate partner with the designation of "Official Court Volleyball of the AVCA." The signing was celebrated with a Perfection® & Confection Baden Dessert Break for coaches hosted by Baden representatives.
Besides the record number of attendees, the AVCA Volleyball Marketplace was sold out for the first time. This annual exhibit show represents the largest business-to-business exchange between coaches and product and service providers in the volleyball world. 95 different exhibitors, occupying almost 200 booths, shared space with two Mateflex hard courts, a U.S. Silica sand court and bleacher seating for 1,000.
On Thursday, convention attendees had the opportunity to pay tribute to the best in the profession at the Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon. The AVCA welcomed four new Hall of Fame Inductees: Irene Matlock, Carl McGown, Dave Shoji and 30-year corporate partner, Sports Imports Inc. The association also honored the Coach of the Year in each division and marked Victory Club milestones for 175 members. In addition, on Thursday, the inaugural Lowe's Senior CLASS award for volleyball was presented to University of Northern Iowa libero, Ellie Blankenship, recognizing her successes both on and off the court.
The 30th class of AVCA Division I All-Americans was recognized on Friday evening at the AVCA All-America/Players of the Year Banquet, presented by Zamst. Two-time Olympic beach volleyball gold medalist, Misty May-Treanor, presented the awards and Olympian-turned-commentator, Kevin Barnett, host of The Net Live, interviewed the recipients. The University of California's Carli Lloyd was named the 2010 AVCA Division I National Player of the Year.
Social events provided an opportunity for less formal interaction. The convention started with the Under Armour Opening Night Reception - featuring casino night presented by 1st Place Volleyball; Friday evening featured the Spalding Reception & Coaches Tournament, a Texas Hold'em Tournament, and the Nfinity 80's Party; the celebrations concluded with the Champions Party presented by the NCAA, AVCA & Kansas City LOC.
Saturday evening history was made at the NCAA Division I Volleyball Championships when Penn State University became the first team in Division I to capture four consecutive national championships. Earlier that day, a record-breaking crowd turned out at Municipal Auditorium to watch the third-annual Under Armour All-America Volleyball Match & Skills Competition, an event featuring the 24 best high school seniors in the country.
Sunday was set aside for junior play and recruiting opportunities as the AVCA Holiday Tournament returned for the second year and the NCSA/AVCA Fall Girls' Talent Showcase allowed 180 aspiring volleyball players to demonstrate their skills in front of 150 college coaches.
Expectations are high for San Antonio, Texas, the site of the 2011 AVCA Convention and NCAA Championships. "The last time we were in San Antonio in 2005, the convention broke all previous records," said AVCA Executive Director, Kathy DeBoer. "The bar is much higher now, but the AVCA reach is broader, and our tent is also much bigger. December 14-18 of 2011 will be our best event ever!"