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Harrow Rotary hosts first annual volleyball tournament



by Adam Gault

Braving cooler than seasonal temperatures, the Harrow Rotary Club held its first annual two-on-two beach volleyball tournament this past Sunday. Dozens of volleyball fanatics took to the sands of Colchester Beach to participate in the event.

Hosted as an opportunity to bring together members of the community in a fun and healthy way, the tournament had an incredible turnout for its first year. Of the 22 teams registered to participate, more than half of them were registered in the under-24 age division.

Harrow Rotary Club members Bryanne Blumenreder and Tara Meyer helped with the initial organization of the event, but it was Meyer’s 16-year-old nephew, Ethan Robinson, who also sits as a Youth Council Member on the Essex Municipal Council, who wanted to ensure that the event focused on bringing young people together.

“I do beach tournaments in Windsor all the time through Rotary up there, so, I just thought it would be neat to have one down here,” Robinson said.

Robinson added volleyball’s straightforward accessibility, and lack of excessive equipment, makes it easy to get into the sport that continues to increase in popularity for young people. It is also a sport known as well for its physical exercise as it is for its opportunity for socialization.

“I think it’s just easy to do. You don’t have a lot of equipment,” Robinson explained. “For example, hockey, you have to get dressed for 45 minutes, where beach volleyball you just show up and play.”

Those who participated in the tournament also had the opportunity to enjoy barbeque and hot beverages Harrow Rotary members prepared. All proceeds from the tournament’s registration fees and food sales went towards supporting the Harrow Rotary Club.

“There isn’t community without people participating in it,” Robinson said, who added that funds raised from the tournament would go towards supporting the club’s efforts in similar community-based initiatives.

The winners of the inaugural Harrow Rotary Beach Bounce Volleyball Tournament were Spencer Ridpath and Alex Bui of Windsor in the 14 to 15-year-old division, Brady Dewal of Amherstburg and Ethan Robinson of Harrow in the 16 to 17-year-old division, Chad and Jordan Coulter of Windsor in the 18 to 24-year-old division, and Trevor Thrasher and Jeff Bilek of Harrow in the 24-plus division. 

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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