Isla Vista’s traditional All-Sorority Volleyball Tournament has been spiked out of town this year, after local law enforcement, several community members and the I.V. Recreation and Park District decided they have had enough.
The annual charity tournament, hosted by the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity, has descended upon Greek Park each of the last three years, bringing with it hundreds of fans and volleyball players hailing from sororities throughout California. However, this year the popular event – tentatively scheduled for May 5 – will be relocated to East Beach, near downtown Santa Barbara.
“I think it is a good event when properly monitored, but it has just grown too large for Greek park,” Lt. Sol Linver, IVFP station commander, said.
Along with support from the Foot Patrol and local fire department, Linver said, the IVRPD banned the event from town in response to the difficulties related to containing its rowdy and oft-intoxicated crowd.
“In past years, there has been damage to the park, including a broken picnic table and torn-down fence,” Linver said. “There were numerous complaints from community members that live adjacent to Greek Park, including complaints of urine on their property.”
The IVFP also had difficulty preventing underage drinking at the strictly “Bring Your Own Beer” tournament last year, which was attended by over 1,000 people, Linver said.
“Last year, there were seven or eight alcohol related arrests, 45 citations given out, and one case of alcohol poisoning in which an ambulance and the fire department had to be called in,” Linver said.
However, ASVP co-coordinator Josh Kruger, a second-year biology major, said the fraternity took a responsible approach to the event and cleaned up any mess they created.
“We always cleaned up every year; we were just trying to have a good time,” Kruger said.
To curb underage drinking this year, Brady Reid, a second-year member of the fraternity and coordinator for ASVP, said the fraternity will sell wristbands to visitors 21 and over, enabling them to drink in the sectioned-off beer garden.
“We want everyone to be safe and we are going to be very strict about 21 and over,” Reid said. “With our reputation at stake, we have to be strict.”
Although Reid said he is fairly confident the tournament will be held on May 5, the possibility of the event clashing with Cinco de Mayo festivities on State Street may cause the date to change. Regardless, he said the fraternity will run busses from Greek Park down to East Beach for those interested in attending.
“I think it’s going to be great,” Reid said. “The venue is huge; in Greek Park we had three courts, now we’ll have eight.”
This will be the fourth year that ATO has hosted ASVT, and the first time it will be outside I.V. in recent history. In previous years, Lambda Chi Alpha often held the event at East Beach, but that tradition died with the closing of the fraternity.
Invitations to the tournament will be sent out to sororities from schools all over Southern California, including University of Southern California, San Diego State and UC Los Angles.