February 04, 2010
By Korie Sawyer
Greater Raleigh CVB Sports Marketing

Volleyball Extravaganza Returns to Raleigh This Weekend

The first sports tournament ever held in the new Raleigh Convention Center is returning to the Capital City this weekend with more bumps, sets and spikes in store for area fans. The Mid-Atlantic Power League, hosted by the Triangle Volleyball Club, will showcase 120 elite level Junior Olympic Girls volleyball teams at the RCC.

"MAPL is one of our favorite events on the Raleigh sports calendar," said Tori Collins, Assistant Director of Sports Marketing for the GRCVB. "It brings a ton of activity to the Raleigh Convention Center and downtown Raleigh."

 Last year, the Triangle Volleyball Club brought 54 teams to the RCC and used 12 courts in the exhibit halls. Combined with last year's success and support from the Greater Raleigh CVB and the Convention Center, this year's event will more than double those figures as 120 teams will be playing on 20 courts. The 20 courts will use 150,000 square feet of the Convention Center, making it the largest indoor junior event central North Carolina has ever seen.  

            The MAPL has only been around for three years, but it is already well-known and valued throughout the volleyball community.

            "Power leagues are very popular among elite volleyball clubs nationally," said Sherry Fadool, Associate Director of the Triangle Volleyball Club. "They provide more affordable but very competitive opportunities for teams when compared to larger, national events." .

            For Fadool, the MAPL is a great way to demonstrate how the Triangle Volleyball Club is committed to excellence and growth. 

            "Triangle Volleyball Club has a duel mission: To educate the whole person through excellence in volleyball, and to grow the sport of volleyball in North Carolina," Fadool said. "After hosting the first MAPL event at the RCC in 2009, the Triangle received recognition from volleyball sources all over the U.S."

Last year's tournament brought tremendous economic success for Raleigh, generating an estimated $270,000 in direct visitor spending. With an increase in teams this year, the MAPL Raleigh is anticipating exceptionally higher numbers, and a chance to give Raleigh more exposure as a destination for youth sports, especially volleyball.

"This year, we expect even larger national coverage of our event from very reputable and visible volleyball publications," Fadool said.

            Partnering with the City of Raleigh and the GRCVB is definitely one reason the Triangle Volleyball Club successfully hosts one of the largest convention center tournaments in North Carolina, Fadool says.

"Both the city and GRCVB were instrumental in helping us to pull off MAPL Raleigh 2009 in just eight weeks," according to Fadool. "They continue to be huge supporters of Triangle Volleyball and MAPL. Our relationship continues to flourish, and it has been an unexpected but very welcome side benefit to hosting this tournament."

            Even with this tremendous partnership, Fadool acknowledges the Triangle Volleyball Club could not pull off the event without the help of the many volunteers needed to assemble the 20 rented courts and help with hosting the event.

            "It is a great community builder for our member families," Fadool said. .

            Overall, the event should also be a great boost to the local economy. According to Fadool, more than 2,500 attendees are expected each day and downtown hotels will likely be sold out. The GRCVB estimates that the economic impact of MAPL Raleigh 2010 is expected to be $500,000.