After a two-year wait, fans of expert Double Dutch rope jumping will be able to see the best jumpers in the world today and Saturday at Sumter County Civic Center.
The American Double Dutch League World Invitational Championship was held in New York City last year to celebrate its 40th anniversary, and its return to Sumter has been welcomed by competitors, said LaTrelle Chambers, program director with the Sumter County Recreation Department.
“Coaches and teams from around the world were ready to come back to Sumter,” Chambers said. “They talked about the Southern hospitality ... here.”
Beginning at 9 a.m. today, teams and individuals will compete for points in compulsory maneuvers, speed and freestyle. Rose Ford, the American Double Dutch League representative for South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida, said the judges will add all three scores to determine who will jump to become world champions on Saturday.
She noted that the Japanese jumpers are particularly athletic and often take top honors, but there should be some local teams competing on Saturday as well.
Jean Ford, chairwoman and president of the American Double Dutch League governing board and director of operations and programs for The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club of Sumter, is in charge of the event. She said she expects an exciting and competitive two days of jumping, described by the league as “a skip rope activity in which two rope turners turn two ropes in eggbeater fashion while one or two people jump within the moving ropes.”
The public is invited to attend the American Double Dutch League World Invitational Championship competition at Sumter County Civic Center, 700 W. Liberty St., beginning at 9 a.m. today and 8:30 a.m. on Saturday. Admission is free.