The 2024 AVP schedule has officially been released, and it includes a bit of the familiar, a smattering of tweaks, and the establishment of the new: a beach volleyball league that will be the first of its kind.
2024 AVP schedule
Three marquee events, known as Heritage Series, which will look and feel a lot like the erstwhile Gold Series, highlight the summer, in Huntington Beach (May 17-19), Manhattan Beach (August 16-18) and Chicago (August 30-September 1). That is the familiar.
The smattering of tweaks consist in mostly name changes — Gold Series to Heritage Series, Tour Series to Contender Events — and the qualification processes to enter into each Heritage Series. Three Contender Series — Denver July 6-7, Waupaca July 13-14, and Virginia Beach August 3-4 — round out the summer of six tournaments.
A few format changes, too, are in store. The Contenders will feature 24 teams, as the Tour Series did, but will be played in a double-elimination format as opposed to modified pool play, which was used in 2023.
Of particular, and positive, note is the lack of conflicts. None of the three Heritage Series conflict with a Volleyball World event of substance, meaning every tournament this summer is expected to have a full field. While Denver and Waupaca conflict with the Gstaad and Vienna Elite16s, respectively, the teams who will be in Switzerland and Austria would not be competing in a Contender event, so there is no real conflict there.
As the Tour Series events served as qualifiers into the Gold and Pro Series the last two seasons, so the Contenders will serve as qualifiers for the Heritage in 2024. Huntington is the only Heritage without an accompanying Contender event, so the 16-team double-elimination tournament at one of the sport’s most popular stops will have an on-site qualifier in which four teams can make the main draw.
After that, Denver, with the familiar 24-team main draw known to Tour Series players, will serve as a qualifier for Manhattan Beach, with the top four teams advancing into the 32-team main draw. Waupaca, the annual festival of volleyball in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, will also serve as a qualifier for Manhattan, with its top four teams advancing into the main draw. The top four finishers in Virginia Beach will claim a spot into the season-ending Heritage Series in Chicago, which will remain a 16-team draw.
Like Huntington, Manhattan will have an on-site qualifier, with eight additional teams advancing to the main draw, to accompany the…