Friday, August 5, 2011


There is a legendary beach ultimate frisbee tournament held every year on the last weekend of July right here in New Jersey.  Hundreds of teams sign up, thousands of ultimate players flood the beach, and a weekend of debauchery ensues.

There's nothing like playing ultimate on the beach.  When you run, it feels as if you're running through half of a foot of water (sometimes burning water depending on the time of day), but when you lay out for a disc it's like landing on a Tempur-Pedic mattress, except of course for all of the sand that gets everywhere and scrapes off your skin like a rug burn.  The spirit of the game changes as well - people aren't as jumpy to call fouls and hammers and other upside-down throws are highly encouraged. After the Saturday games, the tournament directors invite everyone 21 and over to a free biergarten on the beach, followed by a party at the Bolero.  Games commence Sunday morning, and before I knew it all 6 games (4 the first day, 2 the second) were over and I was driving back up the Garden State Parkway.

Blowing up the Bolero
But I think my favorite part of Wildwood was having everyone I had ever wanted to see at the same place in one weekend.  Imagine walking down the street in some random town and seeing everyone (and I mean everyone) that you've gotten close to over the past 5 years.  I saw friends from college that I haven't seen in over a year, and seeing them again at an tournament brought back wonderful memories of those weekends in college that I spent traveling across the country to play ultimate.  I made friends on both the men's and the women's team that I know I will keep in touch with for years to come, even if I do only see them once a year at Wildwood.  While some of my friends have remained in DC, some of my other friends from college are living near Philly, NYC, and Boston (some of them have even traveled to the west coast).  So to have them all in one place, playing together and partying together like we were back in college, was really (as corny as it sounds) special.  No matter where our lives take us we always have one thing in common, which will hopefully bring us back together year after year.

It was also great to see friends from my summer league in Wildwood as well, and needless to say playing in a tournament for the first time in months definitely got me excited for our summer league finals this coming weekend.  I feel like I've finally gotten back my edge when playing ultimate, and if I play in the finals like I did this past weekend I will be very happy.  Most of the time, I knew where to cut, didn't drop the disc, and didn't throw any discs away.  I am pumped for finals this weekend - I really do think that our team can do well.

This weekend was also bittersweet because it was actually harder to say goodbye to my team and my college friends than I thought.  We were all going back to our lives, mine in Jersey and theirs in DC or Boston or Philly.  School will start again in a little less than a month.  I still have some trips to look forward to in August, but that end-of-summer feeling is definitely hitting me hard right now.

I have no idea what's going to happen over the course of this year and I expect to go through a lot of life changes next summer after I finish school, but I do know that I will be spending the last weekend of July 2012 in Wildwood, and I hope to see you all there again.

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