This August, Azevedo Water Polo will bring together youth teams from around the globe for the first ever Aquatic Games – an elite Olympic-style water polo tournament created by 5-time Olympian Tony Azevedo. The Games will go a step beyond other youth tournaments by providing a fun, festive atmosphere complete with an Opening Ceremonies, interactive workshops, on-deck entertainment and a medal/trophy awards finale. “These Games give young athletes a feel of what an Olympic Games is like,” says Olympian Adam Wright.
The Games will include hundreds of participants from over 20 youth teams. “I’m putting a huge amount of energy into this event,” says Azevedo. “I want the Games to inspire the next generation of great water polo players.”
The Games will be held in Long Beach California, the “Aquatics Capital of the USA.” The Long Beach community will be closely involved in many aspects of the event: The Aquarium of the Pacific will offer tours for participants, and local Olympians will be on deck each day to interact with the young athletes.
Participants will benefit from a free pre-tournament clinic with Tony and Adam Wright, and a specialized coaching clinic by Rick Azevedo. Non-profit LA84 – who are working to bring the 2024 Olympic Games to Los Angeles – will make a guest appearance with the Olympic mascot and the official Olympic torch. Other workshops will focus on injury prevention and nutrition.
The Games also promote fun, friendship, and team bonding. Participants will enjoy a photo booth, a surf stimulator and other poolside activities. Most afternoons and evenings, a selection of food trucks will park directly outside the Tournament pool. Music will feature a DJ and live bands including local Long Beach legends “Jelly of the Month Club”. “The format is great!” says Hungarian Olympian Gergely Kiss, “A high-level tournament in one of coolest areas of the world.”
Tony hopes to donate a portion of the Games’ proceeds to Project 2020, a non-profit organization co-founded by Olympian Brenda Villa that provides low income youth with the opportunity to learn to swim and play water polo.
Within the next two years, Tony will incorporate swimming into the Aquatic Games. The swim side will feature Jessica Hardy and other elite swimmers. Every level of competition will also be expanded to include female teams. Learn more at www.theaquaticgames.com.
Players must be members or affiliates of USA water polo: http://www.usawaterpolo.org/
About Azevedo Water Polo:
Azevedo Water Polo (AWP) is an Organization dedicated to growing the sport of water polo both in the USA and abroad. AWP organizes clinics, overseas training trips, and other events geared at creating high-level training experiences for youth. www.azevedowaterpolo.com.