Luis Garrido of Outta Town Productions hands the ball to Rick Busa of Youth Sports Foundation of Puerto Penasco
Outta Town Productions’ final volleyball tournament (see our pre-event blog article @ https://www.sonoranresorts.mx/?p=2206) after 19 consecutive years as a popular event on the beach at Sonoran Sea Resort was a fun day of highly competitive attacking and blocking, tequila and tacos. And we have photos to prove it!
Between the continuing economic crunch and a conflicting tournament closer to home, reasons for this year’s light attendance were clear. What the event lacked in attendance, however, it made up for in loyalty, skill and celebration by the five coed teams who competed for the largest prize purse in this tournament’s history. Loyalty was exemplified by the four teams and their friends and families who made the trip from Phoenix to support the final Rocky Point production by Luis. The fifth team, by the way, was fielded locally by Rocky Point Reservations, making this a true international event.
The weather was perfect, the sea smooth as a lake and blue as a diamond made a stunning backdrop for a day on the beach. As if that weren’t enough, competition started at the Tequila Peñasco sponsor’s tent with shots of their crafted spirit-lifting beverage. The Sonoran Sea’s own Ramón of Ramón’s Restaurant set up his barrel grill right on the beach and served beef or chicken tacos with all the trimmings including grilled green chili peppers, beer and soft drinks.
The RPR Team, comprised of local Mexican nationals, proved to be a handful as they bombed their way to the finals via one match through the loser’s bracket. Then they met up with the undefeated team of Ian Mulqueen, Valley royalty of the pass, set and kill, which they brought to Rocky Point and executed with precision to take the 1st place prize of $1,200 U.S. dollars in cash.
The RPR team was excited about taking 2nd and the $600 dollar cash prize in their first tournament together. We say, “Well done, Rocky Point!” The Outta Town Productions team took 3rd place and $300 dollars. Vince Cervantes’ team placed 4th and walked away with $200 dollars; and Suvi Faulkner’s 5th place team from Flagstaff split $100 dollars.
Even though this was the last tournament that will be organized by Luis Garrido and Outta Town Productions, it is in no way the last of the popular series of volleyball competitions on the beach at the Sonoran Sea resort. As we covered in our pre-event article (https://www.sonoranresorts.mx/?p=2206), Luis made sure that the tournament would continue in good hands. In fact, he could not have “passed the ball” to a more worthwhile group than the Youth Sports Foundation of Puerto Penasco, a locally based non-profit organization successfully devoted to getting Puerto Peñasco’s youth actively involved in sports.
In a short but pointed and moving ceremony right after the final match, Rick Busa, founder and driving force behind the perpetual growth and success of the YSF of Puerto Penasco, accompanied by Mr. Fausto Soto, the Mayor’s Advisor on International Relations and Tourism, presented Luis with an engraved plaque from the Foundation expressing appreciation for his “19 years of service for volleyball tournaments and other sports activities in Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, Mexico.” As to how Luis felt about the plaque, the photo below is worth a thousand words.
Luis continued the informal ceremony by “passing the ball”, a brand new still-in-the- package volleyball, over to Rick, symbolizing the new era for volleyball in Rocky Point. Rick and Fausto appreciated the offer made by Luis to make himself available to assist in putting on the next couple of tournaments until the local team got comfortable with the many tasks and detailed logistics involved in organizing and setting up such an event. Fausto expressed the city’s support of the Youth Sports Foundation and that it would extend to supporting their future volleyball tournaments as well.
Rick Busa founded the Youth Sports Foundation of Puerto Penasco in 2007. Through his hard work and dedication the Foundation’s success has grown in strength and garnered the support of the city as well as the state of Sonora for the donations including clothing, uniforms and equipment YSF of Puerto Penasco has been able to provide to the town’s youth and schools. Says Rick, “Giving the youth of Puerto Peñasco options; that’s what it’s all about. Regardless of the financial ability of their parents, we give them the option of getting involved in sports instead of trouble.”
Only good can emerge from this transition to the next phase of volleyball development here in Rocky Point. Indeed, Luis Garrido started a tradition 19 years ago that has built a loyal following from Arizona and the Southwest who are fans of Rocky Point and who have told their friends and families about our little beach side town. And now, Rick Busa has the skill and strong statewide support through his Youth Sports Foundation of Puerto Penasco to build a highly competitive Mexican national volleyball institution in Sonora. Rick’s goal then is to promote international competitions on the beaches of Puerto Peñasco to raise funds and supplies for youth sports, including youth volleyball.
Volleyball in Rocky Point, thanks to Luis and Rick, continues to be a viable source of tourism for our economy and now another socially redeeming option for the future of our youth.
This blog brought to you by Sonoran Resorts Sales Group, Jim Ringquist, Director of Sales