This Week in Beach Volleyball: Aloha Means Hello And Goodbye


By: Travis Mewhirter

I’m sitting on a roughly eight-hour flight from Houston to Hawai’i — my day began in Baltimore at 4 a.m. — thinking, obviously, about Miss Congeniality.

There’s a scene where Gracie Heart, an undercover FBI agent — played by Sandra Bullock — in a beauty pageant, is sitting with Miss Hawai’i. She wonders aloud whether, in Hawai’i, ‘aloha’ means hello and goodbye.

“Yeah,” Miss Hawai’i responds, “so?”

“So if you’re on the phone with somebody and they won’t stop talking and you say, ‘Ok, aloha’ don’t they just start all over again?” Heart says.

It’s a perfectly stupid joke in a perfectly stupid movie, but I also think it’s kind of a perfect way to describe the final AVP stop of the season, where the tour briefly says hello to Hawai’i, in just its second stop, and goodbye for the season, the final of eight events this year.

Hello for the week.

Goodbye for the next eight months.

It’s an interesting event, too. A small draw with the smallest qualifier yet — just 24 total teams per gender in the qualifier. The points for the initial seeding were not based off the usual best four of your last five, but your best two of three gold series finishes as a team. It’s why we’re seeing teams such as Sean Rosenthal and Brian Cook, John Hyden and Theo Brunner, relegated to the qualifiers rather than being straight into main draw.

Others who would be in the qualifier rather than their usual spot in the main draw — Ty Loomis, Mike Brunsting, Ed Ratledge, Skylar del Sol — have decided to skip altogether, and it’s hard to blame them. Hawai’i is a long way to go to play in a qualifier, especially when most are barely holding onto their Gold Series New York finishes.

It’s the only event on tap this week in beach volleyball, and it’s the last of the AVP season.

Hello and goodbye.


AVP Beach Volleyball

September 19-22

  • TV: Amazon Prime
  • Where: Fort Derussy