Midwest Penguins Volleyball Club, in partnership with E.C.H.O., recently hosted the third annual Big Ball Bash at Center Court Sports Complex in Waukesha. The event raised money for E.C.H.O., and Penguins Teams headed to Nationals.
"It was an outstanding event," said Anne Slattery, club director of Penguins and co-founder of E.C.H.O., "It was so great to see so many people out for the weekend- supporting a great cause."
Empowering Change through Healthy Opportunities, (ECHO) is a not-for-profit organization that provides individuals and families with educational programs and recreational activities to promote greater health and fitness. Additionally, a portion of the proceeds will go towards helping Midwest Penguins teams traveling to the Junior National Tournament this summer.
Nearly 300 people formed 52 teams and participated over the two-day event.
Teams competed in a cross-over type volleyball tournament each night of the event. Instead of a traditional volleyball, teams competed using a giant four-foot volleyball for the matches.
More than 60 volunteers and 19 sponsors helped make the event possible, Slattery said.
"We want to personally thank everyone who came and participated," Slattery said. "The event could not be successful without our participants, our sponsors and our volunteers.
Sponsors for this year’s event included: OneTouchPoint-CCI, Center Court Sports Complex, Culvers- Waukesha, E.C.H.O., Frett Barrington, Midwest Penguins Volleyball, Riedel Sports, WI Coach Lines/Coach USA, Roman Electric Co., Responsory, Orthopaedic Associates of Wisconsin, First Weber Realtors, Northview Banquet Hall and Catering, Orthopedic Institute of Wisconsin, Complete Office of Wisconsin, and Grandma Mueller.
The two-day event raised approximately $9,500. Proceeds benefited E.C.H.O., and the Penguin teams competing at Nationals. These teams include: Penguins 131, 141, 151s who earned National Bids, 161s who earned the Patriot Bid and 171s who earned an American Bid. The 36th Annual USAV Girls Junior National Tournament will take place in New Orleans, La., June 23 through July 2.
Center Court provided food and drink specials for the evening, and Penguin teams generously donated baskets for a drawing valuing between $100 and $150. A silent auction also took place.
Check out the THANK YOU slide show created for participants and sponsors at the event by clicking on the video below.
The Midwest Penguin Volleyball Club, in partnership with ECHO, will host the third annual Big Ball Bash Friday, May 1 and Saturday, May 2 at Center Court Sports Complex in Waukesha.
E.C.H.O. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to empower change through healthy opportunities.
Proceeds from the event will benefit E.C.H.O. and Midwest Penguin teams headed to Nationals.
Last year, nearly 200 people attended the event and raised more than $5,000. Teams competed in a cross-over type volleyball tournament, and instead of using traditional volleyballs, teams used a giant four-foot inflatable ball for the matches.
"We had such a great time last year," said Anne Slattery, co-founder of ECHO and director of Midwest Penguins. "It was a great event that supports the mission of ECHO and also helps us raise money for our teams headed to Nationals. We're looking forward to making this year's event bigger and better than ever."
“We’re really excited about the turnout this year, it’s sure to be a great time,” said Janice Siebert, club director.
Big Ball Bash will kick off tonight with doors opening at 5:30 p.m. and first round of games starting around 6:30 p.m. Teams will compete against each other using a giant-four-foot-volleyball. Games will end at approximatley 9:30 p.m.
“Even if you aren’t on a team, this is a great opportunity to come out and support the Penguins and E.C.H.O,” Siebert said. “It’s fun to watch.”
Food and refreshments will be available throughout the weekend, and Penguins National Teams have donated several themed raffle baskets for the event.
Raffle baskets will be split between the two nights. A silent auction will also take place.
The Badger Region now allows club volleyball programs to recruit players during the off-season. Some may even offer players without going through the tryout process; creating a stressful and sometimes even more competitive process for athletes.
Midwest Penguins Volleyball Club wants the community to know we remain committed to the open tryout process and select teams by evaluating player talent and skill levels during those tryouts.
“Of course we welcome members of our existing Penguin family to join us, but our teams are not predetermined or recruited,” said Anne Slattery, co-director of the club. “The new process will make for a new and interesting environment, but we do encourage anyone and everyone to tryout for Midwest Penguins.”
According to Slattery, some clubs have even hired recruiting coordinators, who get straight work once the club season is over. Offers can be extended, but are not binding until after the athlete’s high school season is complete. Athletes who have accepted any offer must officially accept the offer on the Webpoint website.
If the athlete has not officially accepted the offer on Webpoint it is not official, and athletes are free to attend tryouts at any club.
“Midwest Penguins is a competitive club,” Slattery said. “We build on our team talent with an excellent and experienced coaching staff, and we strive to earn bids to national events at every level. We plan to continue to make the tryout process an important part of our season, and we encourage all athletes; whether being recruited or not, to tryout.”