Will and Ryan Conwell founded The Conwell Sports League, and are planning its first volleyball tournament and canned food drive at Copper Beech townhomes April 30 at noon. The single elimination tournament will benefit the East Alabama Food Drive.
Will and Ryan founded the sports league to provide a laid-back atmosphere for sports like dodgeball, kickball and volleyball.
“It’s a league designed for everybody that is 19 and up in the Auburn-Opelika area,” Will said. “It’s a place to come out, play and have fun—it’s a social league.”
Will said using the volleyball tournament to benefit the food bank was Ryan’s idea.
“I just wanted to work with the East Alabama Food Bank,” Ryan said. “I had talked to them a few different times, and they said their summers are really low on food and they really need the extra help.”
The league’s volleyball season begins in May, and all skill levels are invited to participate.
“We have a dodgeball season, a kickball season and now we’re coming into a summer volleyball season,” Will said. “The tournament is kind of a kickoff for the season.”
This is the first time the league has combined a sports tournament with a service objective.
“We also wanted to do something in the community that would help the community instead of something that would just go out to who knows where,” Ryan said.
There is no cost for registering a team, and music and food will be provided.
Donna Demous, operations manager at the East Alabama Food Bank, said donation needs are highest between June and September.
“We need things like macaroni and cheese and canned meat and fish,” Demous said.
Donations for the East Alabama Food Bank should be canned or nonperishable.
“A nonperishable item is something that doesn’t have to go in the refrigerator or the freezer,” Demous said. “Food drives are usually just nonperishable items.”
Since participation in the volleyball tournament is free, teams are encouraged to bring donations to the games.
“We suggest three or more nonperishable food items per person,” Will said. “We don’t have a specific goal, but anything is more than what they have now.”
The East Alabama Food Bank also accepts donations at its warehouse.
“The only other collection point right now is at the food bank, and we are here from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.,” Demous said. “We also have a collection bin outside where people can leave their donations when we’re not here.”
The tournament is designed for teams of three to five people, and there will be first and second place prizes.
“The big prize is an Auburn University signed football with Cam Newton and Zach Clayton and several other players from last season,” Will said. “That will go to the first place team.”
Teams can register online at the Conwell Sports League website, conwellsportsleagues.com, or in person at 11:30 the day of the tournament.