The sport is normally associated with the beaches of Southern California, but professional tournaments occur around the country - some of beaches and some with huge piles of sand trucked in for the occasion.
My connection is through a friend who will be playing at the AVP Coney Island, NY tournament later this week. The qualifiers have a high level of play and are free (I think). Many of the athletes are approachable in this sport. By the time the tournament really begins on Friday the level of play will be very high.