FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (April 26, 2011) – COOP®, a partner brand of Swimways Corp., has officially signed on as the title sponsor for one of the largest beach soccer festivals in the world. The 2011 COOP Beach Soccer Championships will host more than 300 teams from around the world and is expected to bring 30,000 beach sports enthusiasts to the kickoff event in Oceanside, Calif., the second weekend of May.
The festival has grown more than 150 percent since its inaugural year in 2007, which attracted 8,500 participants. The 2010 event brought more than 30,000 people to Oceanside Harbor, including beach soccer teams from Japan, Portugal, Senegal and throughout the United States. According to a 2009 study released by the California Welcome Center and San Diego Convention Visitors Bureau, more than 90 percent of festival attendees are families.
“Sponsorship is about getting next to a consumer’s lifestyle, and we are very excited to partner with a first-class event that focuses on a lifestyle of fun, family-oriented outdoor activities. The COOP brand and this event align very well in terms of core values,” said Darrin Bryan, brand manager, Swimways Corp.
COOP has been designing innovative outdoor toys, games and sports equipment for more than 12 years, including its quality neoprene Wetfoot® Soccer Ball and Sand Wikis protective footwear, known to many as “sand socks.”
“Beach soccer is the fastest growing segment of soccer, and our partnership with COOP is a natural because they provide top-quality products for beachgoers looking to make the experience at the beach enjoyable and fun,” said Marc Koehler, tournament director.
The pro beach soccer teams will compete for the grand $10,000 prize on center stage, and 29 additional fields will line the beach where youth teams ages 18 and under will compete in their respective divisions for medals and bragging rights.
“We like to think of this event as a soccer tournament happening inside of a beach-wide festival,” Koehler said. “Our emphasis is on family-oriented fun, and there’s no shortage of other activities for families to participate in.”
The festival kicks off with a free kids’ beach soccer clinic on May 13 from 4-6 p.m. at Oceanside Harbor. Former U.S. Beach Soccer National Team player Eddie Soto has been in charge of the kids’ clinic since 2007, teaching thousands of boys and girls the basics of beach soccer. The first pro games will be held that evening as well. All teams and divisions will compete May 14-15, beginning at 8 a.m. both days.
In addition to the soccer competitions, free surfing and Brazilian Samba dance lessons will be offered. The Futboleros, known to many as the “Harlem Globetrotters of soccer,” will return again this year to entertain soccer fans with their incredible acrobatic ball skills.
All festival activities associated with the COOP Beach Soccer Championships are free and open to the public. For more information about the festival, visit www.beachsoccerusa.org/. For information about COOP, visit
The COOP® brand originated in Hawaii with the simple idea of making patented sports products from neoprene and has since become a symbol of fashion, fun and community. COOP is known for its colorful, trend-forward designs and embraces those who share its passion for fun. COOP is more than a brand; it is a lifestyle focused on more fun-filled days of sports in the backyard and at the beach. Visit www.coop-sports.com.
Based in Virginia Beach, Virginia, SwimWays is a privately owned leisure and recreational water products manufacturer whose mission is making free time more fun through innovation. It is a company rich in traditional values and respected for the quality and integrity of its products and services. With distribution in more than 40,000 storefronts, it markets three unique brands: SwimWays®, Kelsyus® and Coop®. With offices in Hong Kong and the United States, the company’s diverse staff is passionate about developing fun and
engaging products for kids.