Oceanside CA— USA Beach Handball (USABH) will officially introduce the Pan Am Beach Handball Championship (PABHC) and its partners, Visit Oceanside and San Diego Exploratory Foundation, at a community event on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at 11 a.m. at SpringHill Suites Marriott Oceanside, 110 N. Meyers St., Oceanside. The event is open to media outlets, local businesses, the sports community and interested public. Olympian and Oceanside native Willie Banks, USABH National Director Dennis Berkholtz and Deputy Mayor Chuck Lowery from Oceanside are slated to speak. The USA National Team coaches and players will be on hand to discuss the upcoming championships.
The partners along with the Pan American Handball Federation will play host to 20 teams from nations across the Americas in the bi-annual competition held on Oceanside beaches, March 6-11, 2018. The USA Men are the current Pan American Champions and will be defending their gold medal win. The tournament is also a qualifier for the World Championships in which four teams from each division will qualify to compete on behalf of their country and Pan America.
“Beach handball perfectly aligns with Oceanside’s fitness-minded personality and our reputation as an ideal destination for elite athletic events,” said Leslee Gaul, CEO of Visit Oceanside. “We are excited to be chosen as the host location for this international championship, which will showcase our beautiful beaches and welcoming community to competitors and spectators from around the world.”
In a preview to the championships, USABH and Visit Oceanside will be hosting an International Beach Handball showcase in November. The USA Men’s National team will take on the Men’s National Team from Qatar in a friendly game at Harbor Beach. The Women’s National Team will showcase their talent in an Oceanside event the weekend of Dec. 9 and 10.
“This is the sport of the future in beach communities here in SoCal and across the country, and the United States is poised to be a leader in the Americas,” said Dennis Berkholtz, USABH Director. “We are honored to be able to host these games with our exceptional community partners who are committed to promoting vibrant, healthy communities and sports lifestyles. It is a win-win for USA Beach Handball.”
Beach Handball is one of the quickest growing beach sports in the world – fast paced, high scoring, spectator friendly. The game is the “sand” version of the Olympic sport of Team Handball, played with teams of four and two action packed sets of 10 minutes each. The USA Beach Handball Program was founded in Southern California in late 2015 and the women’s team relocated to the Hermosa Beach training site a year later. USA Beach Handball is a discipline of USA Team Handball located in Colorado Springs, CO.
Visit Oceanside (www.visitoceanside.org) is the official tourism marketing organization in Oceanside, California, promoting travel to the city for both leisure and group visitors and operating one of the state’s official California Welcome Centers. San Diego Exploratory Foundation (www.sdexploratoryfoundation.org) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization working to promote San Diego as the hub of sports and active lifestyle sports.