Arts & Entertainment
Metro Detroit Vollyball League plays every Wednesday in Warren.
Get Your Volleyball On
Originally printed 10/31/2013 (Issue 2144 - Between The Lines News)
Ready to get your volleyball on? Metro Detroit Volleyball League, organized through Stay and Play Social Club (SPSC), is currently looking for teams, players and sponsors for their second season of play. The league started Sept. 25, playing every Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. at Blue Water Sports Center at 6881 Chicago Road in Warren. The league runs for nine weeks, seven regular season and two weeks of playoffs.
Brian Lane, Vice President of the MDVL, is excited about the second season. "I have played volleyball since I was 13," Lane said. "I started playing beach volleyball at Oakland Yard as a kid and played for MSU's club team in 2000." When he was asked to help out by founder Michael Champagne, Lane felt it was a natural fit.
The growth of the league has been impressive. "Last year we had eight teams in the league and about 65 players. This year, the league has more than doubled, as we already have 17 teams and 125 players registered that will compete in two divisions; Intermediate (eight teams) and Recreation (nine teams). We can take a maximum of 20 teams this year and hope to grow next year to offer three divisions (Advanced, Intermediate, and Recreation). As the league grows we are looking to get more LGBT friendly businesses to help support teams so that we can keep our costs down," Lane said. Current sponsors include Bingo Pet Salon, Club Gold Coast, Hayloft, Club Liquid, Malebox II, MIC, Pronto (two teams), and RE/MAX Complete by Derek Pratley.
Pratley is sponsoring an intermediate team, though he himself is a novice. He will be playing on the Hayloft Team while a group of more adept players wear his name on their shirts. "It's good for LGBT people to play team sports because as well as being a great way to get and stay fit, team sports help improve mental health via higher self-esteem, increased pride in our sexuality and an increased sense of belonging. There are definite social benefits from making new friends on the league and working in a team setting," Pratley said. He added that being a sponsor helps him support these efforts, while making contacts for his realtor business.
Jason R. Armbruster of Royal Oak is among the players in the league. He says he plays because "it's great to see more people in this community that enjoy sports as much as I do. I'm very active with playing volleyball in the area and when I heard that there was going to be a league for the LGBT community, I thought that's fantastic and put a team together immediately."
Because there are two levels of competition, MDVL offers fun and recreation for everyone, regardless of their skills. "It doesn't matter what your level of skill is for this league. It's fun, full of laughs, and a great way to be involved and meet new people," Armbruster said.
People can learn more by contacting MDAVL on facebook or contacting Brian Lane at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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