My birthday’s coming up (one of the big ones) so how to celebrate? Organize the first ever Becky Cup of course!
Yep, that’s right! For my 40th birthday I’m organizing Xiamen’s first ever foreigner and Chinese badminton tournament. Holla! It’s a full service tournament with event t-shirts, opening ceremonies, medals and everything. It’s the first time I’ve ever organized an event like this.
So how does this all work? Well, I’ll admit it’s been a bit tough. I’m doing this by myself (not a group or organization thing) but everything needs to be in both English and Chinese. And I’ve been dealing with all the vendors and service providers myself.
Luckily I have very talented friends who I’ve been able to ask for help. My friend translated my write-up and tournament rules and helped me with the registration software. My other friend helped me with Photoshop after I found some images I wanted put together for the logo, and a few of my non badminton playing friends are being the cheerleaders. The professional photographer who is going to record the event is my pal too. I am calling upon the talents of my friends to help make this a success. Luckily they have many talents.
But the biggest help is my badminton coach. When I started organizing this tournament I assumed that I would play it at the same place I play with my group. But then my coach told me the awesome news that he is opening his own badminton courts just weeks before my birthday! In fact, they are still not open yet so we will be the first event to happen there!
So we’ll have the run of the place which is a relief for planning. I was really unsure of how many courts to rent since everyone waits till the last minute to sign up. At the other courts weekends are packed with classes and regulars so I would probably be restricted to just a few and the tournament could take a long time. But with my coaches new place he won’t have time to establish regulars yet, so we will have the run of the place and can be flexible.
And he’ll take care of some of the logistics for me, like making sure there is enough water, shuttles and things like that. And since my teacher is a bigwig in the badminton community he has sponsorship. He told me he will add to the prizes with equipment, socks, sports drinks etc. He said he even has some free rackets he can give to the winners! Super cool!
This tournament was set up with my regular group in mind, but I’ve already had a few people sign up that don’t play with us, and a few strangers have shown interest as well (strangers to me. Perhaps they know my teacher or someone in my group.) This is the kinda thing that will come together in the last few days so who knows. I’m expecting about 25-30 people all together.
Just one funny story about organizing something in another language and culture. I was chatting online with the vendor of the medals, asking them to design it for me. They were really fast and kinda perstering me with constant chatting. “Are you there? What’s your question? I can help you! Are you there? Are you there?” So I wrote back they should be patient because I’m a foreigner.
“You can speak English!” they wrote back in Chinese. I said, in Chinese, “Are you sure?” and they said in English, “yes!” So I sent my logo and told them what I wanted on the top of the logo and what I wanted under the logo. They said they would make the design and a few minutes later I got this:
We spoke only Chinese after that, lol.
If you live in China and want to take part, please click here to register! (If you have wechat, that’s the easiest way to register and pay. Search the 活动行 app or ask me for the wechat link.)