Green light

For green grass outdoor volleyball tourney; Meyer: ‘great for tourism’

Farragut Alderman Scott Meyer got the green light to help bring a pilot outdoor grass adult volleyball tournament to Town next fall.

Meyer had first presented to the idea to the Farragut Tourism Advisory Board in November, but made an abbreviated version of the pitch to the Town Board of Mayor and Aldermen during a workshop Thursday, Dec. 12.

The tournament will be coordinated by Chris Hames, highly successful girls volleyball coach at Webb School of Knoxville who recently resigned, and also owner/director of K-2 Volleyball Club in Louisville — a program in which Meyers’ daughters are long-time active participants.

Meyer had been working with Hames — who has extensive experience operating a series of indoor volleyball tournaments in Sevierville Convention Center — on the details of what he describes as a pilot sporting event project for the Town.

“This would be great for tourism,” Meyer said. “What I love about this opportunity is that they can come here and stay in our hotels. There will be a link (on the K-2 site) for where they can stay.”

He noted the National Championship Grass Volleyball tournament was held in Nashville earlier this year offering $20,000 in cash prizes and brought more than 1,000 participants.

“And that is to include the spouses, parents or other kids who

attended, too,” he said.

The cost to Farragut will be $15,000, an amount that will go toward prize money for the tournament, scheduled to take place at Mayor Bob Leonard Park in September 2020.

Meyer requested the $15,000 in funding be earmarked for the planned volleyball tournament, taking the place of what was previously a $15,000 Town donation toward the Knoxville Open, which had been held at Fox Den Country Club but will be held at another Knox County course starting in 2020.

Initially, Meyer also had proposed considering selling alcohol at the tournament, but that suggestion met with opposition by two Board members.

“I like this idea,” Alderman Drew Burnette said. “The only thing I’m not excited about it the alcohol part.”

While Vice Mayor Louise Povlin noted BOMA had recently approved a new ordinance that would allow alcohol at specific Town-owned venues, and Alderman Ron Pinchok said, “I’m all for it,” Mayor Ron Williams weighed in opposing alcohol.

“I don’t think this is the place for it,” Williams said. “And I do not see how we are going to police it properly.”

“It’s an adult event, but I like what both of you are saying,” Meyer said. “I don’t think it is a deal breaker.”

“I would like to see this pilot to go without alcohol and see how it goes,” Williams added.