Participants in the 2018 Spike it to Cancer Tournament
Participants in the 2018 Spike it to Cancer Tournament

Sand volleyball teams from around Kentuckiana are invited to the seventh annual Spike it to Cancer sand volleyball tournament on Saturday, Aug. 10, at Baxter Jack’s Volleyball Cub, 427 Baxter Ave. The tournament will raise funds to support patients at the University of Louisville James Graham Brown Cancer Center through the Mary Jane Gift Quality of Life Fund.

Established in 2013 by Alex and Tommy Gift in honor of their late mother, who passed away from breast cancer in 2010, the Gift Fund helps patients and their families enjoy life while facing a cancer diagnosis. For the past several years, the fund has provided Thanksgiving turkeys for patients at the UofL Brown Cancer Center.

To continue the tradition, the Gifts and former volleyball player Paige Sutton are sponsoring the tournament. Coed Quad Open Division play starts at 9 a.m. (check in at 8:15 a.m.). The Coed Sixes Division will start at about 2 p.m. (check in at 1:30 p.m.). 

Team registration fees of $300 go directly to the fund. A cash prize of $3,000 to be divided among winning and runner up teams has been donated by The Power Agency. To register a team or make a donation, go to the event’s online link.

Ward 426 on Baxter Ave., directly across the street from Baxter Jack’s, has once again agreed to donate a portion of all food and beverage sales throughout the day to the Gift Fund.

“Mary Jane taught us countless lessons throughout the course of her life. Stay Positive. Be thankful. Step away from it all,” Alex Gift said. “The fund can help do this by providing simple gifts to patients that could help improve their quality of life, even if it’s for a short period of time.”

The event has brought in more than $45,000 throughout six years.