Tradition to be carried on at July 4 Doubles Volleyball Tournament | ParkRecord.com

Tradition to be carried on at July 4 Doubles Volleyball Tournament

Annual event expected to draw more than 100 teams

Ian Jones serves to his opponent as teammate Christian Honer looks on during the annual doubles volleyball tournament at City Park last year.

The Fourth of July in Park City is all about tradition.

From the day's opening activities on Main Street to the fireworks at Park City Resort, most events throughout town have been around for decades.

One event, the July 4 Doubles Volleyball Tournament hosted by Park City Recreation in conjunction with the Utah Outdoor Volleyball Association, is gearing up for its 35th year, despite many of its participants not being Parkites.

"A lot of the people who do come and play are coming from out of town," said Lauren Howerter, recreation coordinator for Park City Recreation. "They'll stay in the hotels and we give out prizes from [first place to third place] in each division. They'll utilize those gift cards at the end of the day, spend them in town and spend the day [in Park City]."

Last year, the event drew about 90 teams, Howerter said, and she expects roughly 100 on Tuesday. The tournament has a variety of divisions: open, AA, A, B, novice and junior. Most matches will take place on the grass at Treasure Mountain Junior High, though the men's and women's open division will take place on the sand at City Park.

Howerter said the open division is typically the most exciting, as some of the players are former collegiate athletes.

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"It is unbelievable the level of play [the open divisions] are at," Howerter said. "A lot of them play in the (Association of Volleyball Professionals) tournaments. It's a lot of the same guys, and they'll switch up partners, which is fun to see how the dynamics change. If you have time to stop by and watch them play, it's really fun."

The Utah Outdoor Volleyball Association, which will be present at the event, runs tournaments throughout the state all summer long. Those interested in participating or watching the event can expect a long tournament — Howerter said open division play can start as early as 7:30 a.m. and run as late 9 p.m. — but also a well-run one.

"They're helping with registration and if I need a hand with net set up," Howerter said. "They're definitely there helping things run smoothly and make sure that everything is getting taken care of in a timely fashion."

Team check-in will run from 8-8:30 a.m. at Treasure Mountain Junior High. Registration is currently open online at http://www.active.com and closes at noon on Monday, July 3. Day-of registration is available at the cost of $25 for UOVA members and $35 for non-UOVA members.