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Tee Minus 5 days Until RBVL Liftoff

By Joe McGivney                                           5/19/17


Is the calendar correct?  Can beach volleyball really be starting in five days?  Yes and yes!  The Rockaway Beach Volleyball League will hold their first night of beach volleyball this coming Wednesday at 6:30 PM at Riis Park.  Excitement is building for this season, which is the 28th year for the RBVL.  Wow!  5/24 is an optional night for teams to get out for the first time and work off some of the rust that has built up over the fall and winter months.  A large can of WD-40 may have to be sprayed on the bumps, sets and spikes for them to travel smoothly.  When the weather is good 50 to 60 teams have showed up and had fun playing non-league matches with friends and colleagues.  Right now the forecast for Wednesday is 66į and sunny so this year promises to be bigger and better.  If you are not on a team and you are looking to play, you can come to the beach and try to hook up with a needy team.  When they see you in action, captains have a better picture of your ability and how it meshes with their team than they do from a phone conversation.  It is not easy hooking onto veteran teams but it happens.  Sometimes teams find out that they need a few live bodies.  Good luck.  76 teams will prepare to battle this summer in 10 divisions, which span many levels of expertise.  There are beginners like Rocky and experts like Murph or is it beginners like Murph and experts like Rocky.  Or mailmen like Murph and retirees like Rocky?  Or retirees like Murph and Rocky?  Or is it none of the above?  The 2017 Divisional layout is published here in the Wave so teams can see where they were placed and can plan their game strategies accordingly. 


The RBVL has a new president for 2017.  Patty Moule has stepped down and Steve Gifford has volunteered to command the ship moving forward.  Steve becomes the 4th president in league history following in the footsteps of Sue Brown, Nancy Gentile and Patty Moule.  Good luck, Steve.  Welcome back to all of the returning sponsors and to the newest sponsors of RBVL teams.  The league would not flourish without your financial support and is very grateful for your help.  RBVL players should consider using some of the many league sponsors for personal items.  After all, these businesses supported you when you needed them; why not return the favor and support them if you need services they provide.  Your RBVL Committee members will be around each and every week to help out on any matters and ensure that the league continues to run smoothly and efficiently.  Due to the very large population of players in the RBVL more equipment must be purchased and more referees must be found each season.  Players always say that they will do whatever it takes to help the season run smoothly.  And, so far, it has worked year after year.  That same spirit will be needed in 2017 as well.  Your league has become the place to be during the summer in Rockaway.  Remember that has happened primarily because of great camaraderie and sportsmanship more than great bumps, sets and spikes, although they are nice, too.  Prospective new referees are always welcome.   You do not need to be a certified ref to work in the RBVL.  In fact, many refs have been quite successful with a strong playing background (college and high school) and limited referee experience.  Come to the beach on 5/24 and introduce yourself to one of the Committee members if you would like to be worked into our rotation. 


Rosters are also waivers and must be signed by all players by practice week or delivered to Patty at 550 B. 133rd St. by Monday 5/29 or you will forfeit the first week 5/31.  For this reason and reasons of fair play, teams are not permitted to pick up players from the sidelines on nights they are shorthanded, not even if the opposing captain approves it.  If you need players for your roster, let us know what you need; there are many individual players looking to join the RBVL.  Also, every team must pick up their uniforms on practice night.  Playing is optional on 5/24 but picking up your shirts is not optional.  Right now NPS has given us no storage space at all at Riis Park.  There is nowhere to store your shirts!  Remember to bring your net back immediately after your game.  Then go back and finish your beverages and chit-chat.  Have some consideration.  Itís the least you can do.  Bad sportsmanship seems to be creeping into the RBVL picture and that is totally unacceptable, particularly when it involves referees.  Many of our referees are children of players and neighbors, doing their best to call games fairly.  No one has the right to abuse refs at any time.  If they do they and their teams will pay the penalties.  Captains, you are reminded that the RBVL is your league and you are responsible for your teamís behavior.  Step up to nip any problems in the bud.


Captains are reminded that they can have team items entered in the weekly Wave article by showing up at the sponsor bar or by e-mailing Joe at jmcgivney2@nyc.rr.com by 11 PM on Wednesday night.  Key dates on the Summer schedule begin with 5/24/17.  Wednesday, 5/24 will be our first night of volleyball at the beach. It will be a practice night for all and uniforms will be given out at that time.  Wednesday, 5/31 will be opening day and play will continue every Wednesday until 8/12.  On Saturday, 8/12, the league championships will be played Ė keep your schedules clear.  The RBVL has a Facebook page and, if you like it, you will receive timely updates, whoever you are, captain or not.  If you have any questions along the way please contact Steve Gifford via e-mail at irvman331@verizon.net.   See you on the beach on 5/24 for RBVL season #28!