Thanks to Sage Taylor for the awesome photo!
Lei Out is easily one of the biggest ultimate tournaments in the world, with nearly 4500 players in 2016 and still expected to be bigger this year!
You'll of course have a rockin' time with your own crew; but having so many folks in one place means you're also bound to run into former teammates, and you'll for sure make dozens of new friends on the beach! And there's just the warm feel-goodness of seeing a sea of people wearing funny costumes playing beach ultimate for as far as the eye can see.
The downside of having so many players in one place is that we take up a lot of space! It takes at least half an hour to walk from Tourney Central to the farthest field (multiply X 5 if you stop to chat with friends playing in games as you pass, as is inevitable). It's really difficult for one venue to hold all of our craziness for the Saturday party, and hotels near the fields fill up months in advance.
Have no fear, ultimate sandstars, we've got 5 years of Lei Out experience, and we're here to share with you all the tips we've learned along the way:
1. Get some wheels!
There's a sidewalk that stretches the entire 2-mile length of the fields. Rent bikes or rollerblades, or check your razor scooter on the plane to make the commute more bearable!
2. Use rideshare!
Uber and Lyft are very affordable if your hotel/airBnB is far from the pier, and if you get a group to carpool and split the cost, well you do the math. Don't make a teammate DD and spend the whole party circling around looking for parking!
Know where to be when
1. Go to the merch booth saturday morninG!
As was mentioned, there are a TON of people playing at Lei Out, and gear and giveaways always go fast. Take some time Saturday morning to catch up with old friends at Tourney Central and enjoy the primo sizes and items of Lei Out gear at Five HQ.
You wait till Sunday afternoon to hit up the merch booth, and you will see slim pickings, friends!
(Heads up for your convenience, this year we'll have TWO merch tents spaced out along the beach on Saturday!)
2. Get to the finals field early!
After your games end on Sunday, hustle on over to the finals field (in front of Tourney Central) to snag a couch and get a front row seat to the action! (In case you need to be hyped on how awesome the finals game is: feed on these 2016 highlights!)
Lei Out doesn't end when the game's over, though - stay for the dance party that congregates in the middle of the field afterward! It's a terrific way to send off Lei Out 2017 in one epic mosh of sweat and friend-love.
Super pro tip: offer to help the booths clean up after the event and you might get some free swag that's leftover!
Places in the area to check out
1. The party is at Rusty's!
It gets crowded fast, so don't pre-funk too long before you come out to the party! Get your wristbands from your captain, and boogie on down to the pier for some good dancing (until it gets so crowded that dancing becomes more jumping and group swaying that is)!
2. feed yourself at Stout Burgers and Beers
Need some grub after playing all day? This is the spot. Delicious burgers, great service, and smack dab in the middle of all the Lei Out action - you can't go wrong!
3. For 21+ friends: enjoy 2 for 1 drinks at Cabo Cantina!
A couple things before you embark: 1) there's about a 2-hour window when the deal is not available, and 2) the deal does NOT include the mega margaritas. If you order the mega marg expecting a deal, you will be sorely disappointed when you get the bill...
There is also karaoke here on Thursday and Sunday's if you're around on those days!
Over to you!
Do you have some favorite spots and expert advice for folks going to Lei Out? Let us and our readers know in the comments below!