HISTORY OF BEACH VOLLEYBALL: THE MIRAMAR® KING OF THE BEACH®, KING OF THE COURT®, QUEEN OF THE BEACH® and QUEEN OF THE COURT® STORY
The history of beach volleyball is an exciting one! Beach Volleyball was introduced to the beaches of Santa Monica by Duke Kahanamoku, when he relocated from his native Hawaiian Islands (Outrigger Canoe Club) to become a beach guard at the Santa Monica Beach Club. At the Outrigger, the game was informal, where a net was strewn between two coconut trees and played with a large soft ball.
Two Santa Monica lifeguard brothers, Nate and Sam Shargo would visit the Outrigger Canoe Club and play beach volleyball with "Duke" and renowned surfer/waterman Tom Blake. These two brother’s took what was a relaxing past time in Hawaii to another level and never looked back.
Over the next several decades California beach volleyball became a way of life on the coast. When the surf was flat or you were finished surfing for the day, you played volleyball, period. As time elapsed, tournaments were developed and bragging rights from Santa Cruz to San Diego were being challenged at these events. Eventually true heroes of the sport arose and the birth of the “King of the Beach” status became the entitlement many legends of yesterday and young guns of beach volleyball today coveted. Who didn't want to be "King of the Beach" in the surf or on the sand?
The history of beach voleyball credits the first celebrated "King of the Beach" as Duke Khanamoku, who some consider the greatest waterman ever. The Duke surfed, played beach volleyball and was a lifeguard when he relocated from his native Hawaiian islands and the Outrigger Canoe Club to become a beach guard at the Santa Monica Beach Club. Beach volleyball soon graduated from a six pack of beer for first prize, into real cash.
HISTORY OF VOLLEYBALL: The "DUKE" AND HIS BOARD AT THE OUTRIGGER CANOE CLUB
HISTORY OF VOLLEYBALL: Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers - Spalding® King of the Beach® Gold Medalists
In the 70's, Jim Menges (also a King of the Beach® endorsed athlete) became the "King" in the history of volleyball records. There were other’s that preceded him, icons like Henry Bergman, Gene Selznick and Ron Von Hagen (considered by many the "Babe Ruth" of Beach Volleyball", but it was Jim Menges that garnered the covers of magazines and earned sponsorship as the first star of beach volleyball.
Over the next several decades of history of volleyball, there’s been a number of “King’s of the Beach", all whom have earned this right by conquering the game on (and for some of them, off) the court. Sinjin Smith and Randy Stoklos are certainly the most notable pair to ever grace the sands and won over 100 "Opens" together, a feat that will most likely never be repeated. As a team and individually, they both continue to be celebrated by most as the Kings of the Beach. And Randy Stoklos just graced the 2016 Cover of DIG Magazine's #1 edition, as the most feared spike on the beach.
Karch Kiraly is without a doubt, the "King of the Beach" in the minds of many. And, he is credited with the creation of the original "King of the Beach" Invitational, held first in Daytona Beach, Florida, together with Pro Serv and the trademark owners, back in 1991.
Karch went on to dominate this event, winning the first 4 held. And, "Karch" or "King" as translated, has won more individual world beach volleyball titles than any other player in the history of the sport. In 2016, Kiraly was just named "Player of the Century", by the Pac 12, not to mention three Olympic Gold Medals to his name.
Today, Karch is most celebrated as the greatest volleyball player ever, is a broadcast announcer and is the current Head Coach of the US Women's National Team. We're rooting our country, the players and Karch on in Rio 2016! It will not be surprise anyone if he adds a 4th Olympic Gold Medal to his name together with his talented team, but, this time as a coach!
Karch currently endorses and oversees the development of the Spalding® King of the Beach® volleyballs and Net Systems. The 2016 Spalding® King of the Beach® "All Weather" Outdoor Beach volleyball is the Official Beach Volleyball of the King of the Beach® and Queen of the Beach® Tour, with over 1000 events in 100 locations throughout the US this summer.
Tim Hovland, Mike Dodd and Kent Steffes are also among the most notable and recognizable "Kings of the Beach" for their amazing feats in our great game.
There are many others, too, in this great and celebrated history of beach volleyball, that have earned the title. Amazing players like Adam Johnson, Jose Loiola, Scott Ayakatubby and Brent Frohoff are just a few, and there are many, many more.
HISTORY OF VOLLEYBALL: The "1999 KING OF THE BEACH," held at the Hard Rock Cafe Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada also added women from the AVP under license from the trademark owners and was broadcast live by Fox Sports Network.
Today, beach volleyball is again growing rapidly in appeal, and the Miramar® “King of the Beach” title is as coveted now as it was when the ultimate “King of the Beach,” Duke Kahanamoku introduced the game to the Shargo brothers. At any time and on any given beach there is someone who is recognized as the King or Queen.
The Manhattan Beach Open ("The MBO") held annually in Manhattan Beach, California (Home of The MIRAMAR® KING OF THE BEACH® and QUEEN OF THE BEACH® , KING OF THE COURT®, QUEEN OF THE COURT® and KING OF THE SNOW® brands and it's design studio) has been an event that has crowned many as King of the Beach or Queen of the Beach since 1960. In fact, three MIRAMAR® KING OF THE BEACH® sponsored athletes have won a record 5 MBO's each for a total of over 15 MBO’s. They are: Sinjin Smith, Jim Menges and Karch Kiraly.
And in 2015, Phil Dalhausser, became a five-time MBO winner together with his partner Nick Lucena. On the women's side, April Ross, the AVP's player of the year, also won with her partner Jennifer Fopma.
HISTORY OF VOLLEYBALL: Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena become Kings of the Beach in 2016 along with Queen of the Beach™ Titles to Jen Fopma and April Ross!
Volley America, together with Spalding®, our proud partner manufacturing and distributing the Spalding®/KING OF THE BEACH® and QUEEN OF THE BEACH™ volleyballs, held their recent exciting annual SPALDING® KING OF THE BEACH® AND QUEEN OF THE BEACH™ Invitational, including men's, women's and co-ed in October 2015 in Clearwater Beach, Florida.
With the inclusion of co-ed, the Spalding® VolleyAmerica King of the Beach® and Queen of the Beach™ tournament was exciting to watch!
HISTORY OF VOLLEYBALL: The 2015 Annual Volley America Spalding® King of the Beach® and Queen of the Beach™ Season ending events in Clearwater beach, Florida.
There is a bright future ahead and plenty of opportunity to Rule the Surf and the Sand! It’s good to be King or Queen of the Beach!
Visit us often for more information, upcoming events, stories and King of the Beach® and Queen of the Beach™ products at:
HISTORY OF BEACH VOLLEYBALL STORY, KING OF THE BEACH® AND QUEEN OF THE BEACH™