Juli Anne Patty 0000-00-00 00:00:00
In recent years, America’s communities have made some major investments in their sports facilities, resulting in an impressive array of homes for sports events of every kind. From multifield sportsplexes to beloved historical fields, America’s sports facilities are state-of-the-art, experienced and ready to host your next event. FIRESTONE STADIUM, AKRON, OHIO Steeped in Akron’s historical industrial era charm, Firestone Stadium remains one of the area’s premier sporting venues. After a $3.5 million renovation,The stadium offers teams an even more impressive array of amenities and services. In addition to the Ohio High School Athletic Association Regional Tournament, held at Firestone since 1998, Fire-Stone hosted the 2007 NCAA Division II softball finals and will host the PONY National Championships from 2009- 2011. The stadium will also welcome athletes from around the globe attending the 2014 Gay Games, which was recently awarded to Cleveland & Akron, Ohio. Built in 1925, Firestone offers the lighted Firestone Stadium Main Field, Firestone Pony Field, and Colonial Salt Field, a convenient warm-up facility. Firestone seats 2,500 spectators and provides two locker rooms, coaches’ meeting rooms and centrally located scoreboard and professional sound system, both operated from the press box. Firestone also has parking for 575 vehicles as well as bus spaces. “Akron has a history of pioneering industry and innovation, and Firestone Stadium, built by Harvey Firestone of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, is just another example of that heritage,” says Joey Arrietta, general manager, Firestone Stadium. “Today we honor that heritage by executing successful, world-class events.” SIMPLOT SPORTS COMPLEX, BOISE, IDAHO Boise is many things. In Idaho’s southwest corner, visitors experience a full range of metropolitan conveniences and Nearly any outdoor recreation they could desire. And at Boise’s Simplot Sports Complex, athletes compete in a first-rate facility against the backdrop of the Boise foothills. A 160-acre facility with 20 regulationsize soccer fields and 15 Little League baseball fields, Simplot Sports Complex offers up everything a sports event needs to succeed, including more than 1,600 parking spaces, restroom facilities, a playground and miles of walking paths,All a short drive from Boise’s many attractions, including the Wahooz Family Fun Zone and Roaring Springs Water Park. What’s more, the facility takes an eco-minded maintenance approach including, clipping-fertilized turf irrigated by surface water and recycling bins throughout the facility. The complex hosts many local, state, and regional events and tournaments for youth play, including the yearly Les Bois Invitational Soccer tournament, (5-7 states), and the Far West Regional Soccer Championship. “We’re thrilled to partner with many youth organizations and associations to host events,” says Laurie McConnell, communications manager, Boise CVB. “We provide what many consider the ‘Best-of-the-West’ fields and facilities the northwest has to offer.” WAKE NATION, BUTLER, OHIO Named 2010 Best of Ohio in both Ohio and Cincinnati Magazine, Butler, Ohio’s Wake Nation is making serious waves in cable water sports. Wake Nation’s 30-foot-high cable system Wake Nation’s 30-foot-high cable system allows riders the ability to wakeboard, water ski, kneeboard and wake skate without a boat. Wake Nation features a 10-acre lake, surrounded by an 8- acre park. Designed to provide the ultimate ride to both amateurs and experienced boarders, Wake Nation makes the perfect location for a range of events. The facility was designed with sustainability in mind as well: Wake Nation’s cable system uses less energy than it takes to run a dishwasher, and the lake liner is made entirely of recycled materials. Spectators receive the same special treatment as athletes, with a 4,000 square-foot observation deck and lawn seating. The facility also offers a pro shop, concession stand, restrooms and Paved and grass parking, all located within minutes of Butler’s many restaurants, hotels and attractions. “Wake Nation Cincinnati is the perfect spot to host your next cable water sport event,” says Stephanie Gigliotti, sports and event sales manager, Butler County CVB, “Whether you’re a first-timer or a seasoned pro, Wake Nation will not only be challenging; it will be a blast!” EL POMAR YOUTH SPORTS PARK, COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO With 18 playing fields covering 58 acres, Colorado Springs’ El Pomar Youth Sports Park is devoted to youth sports and ensuring youth have top-notch facilities on which to compete. “Colorado Springs Youth Sports, Inc., a 501(c)(3) charitable, non-profit organization, oversees the management of the El Pomar Youth Sports Park,” explains Lauren Weiner, executive director, Colorado Springs Youth Sports, Inc. “Our mission at CSYS, Inc., is to provide firstrate sports facilities and opportunities for youth participation in sports and recreation.” Nine of El Pomar’s fields are devoted to baseball and softball, while the other nine fields host soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, and football. The newest addition to the Park is Kent Olin Field, a championship- size artificial turf field built in 2006. The facility has hosted a variety of stand-out events, including the Pride of the Rockies Soccer Tournament, Triple Crown Baseball Tournament, Super Series Baseball Tournament and the First Annual Ride to Save a Suicide bike ride. El Pomar Youth Sports Park is located within five miles of many restaurants and large hotels, several of which partner with the park to offer discounted rates, and just one mile from the highway, making transportation to and from the facility easy and convenient THE SOUTH COMMONS SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT COMPLEX, COLUMBUS, GEORGIA With numerous multi-sport complexes and an Olympic proven Supercenter recreational facility, Columbus, Ga., has a rich tradition of hosting successful local, regional, national and international athletic events. “The South Commons Sports and Entertainment Complex, home to a range of sports facilities, is a striking example of our sports excellence commitment,” says Herbert Greene, executive director, Columbus Sports Council. The facility’s softball complex, built in 1995, offering seven fields and a stadium field, hosts hundreds of annual local events and dozens of local, state, regional, national and international softball competitions. Historical Golden Park, originally constructed in 1906, was completely renovated in 1996 to host the first ever Olympic Women’s fast pitch softball event during the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games. The ballpark also hosts such events as the Southeastern Conference college baseball championship. AJ McClung Memorial Stadium, home to the Georgia-Auburn football contest, 1916-1958, now hosts local youth football and soccer, high school football and decades-old annual college football events. Columbus Civic Center hosts a myriad of concerts, sporting events and family shows including the Original Harlem Globetrotters, the “World Famous” Lipizzaner Stallions and World Wrestling Entertainment. And the 32,000-square-foot Jonathan Hatcher Skateboard Park has hosted the 2009 Georgia Bowl Riders Championship. HEARTLAND PUBLIC SHOOTING PARK, GRAND ISLAND, NEBRASKA The largest public shooting facility in the Midwest is located in the center of Nebraska in Grand Island, Central Nebraska’s Platte River Oasis. Heartland Public Shooting Park (HPSP) consists of 420 acres, including six lighted skeet ranges, four lighted trap ranges and a 10-station sporting clay range. The facility offers a variety of rifle and pistol ranges, and its 12 Action Shooting Bays allow for United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) events in action handgun and multi-gun events, as well as Single Action Shooting Society (SASS) affiliated Cowboy Action Shooting Events. Sustainable Wildlife Areas make up over 50% of the park, allowing for incredible wildlife viewing, and the facility also offers archery, an activity center, a 50-person meeting/class room, a sevenacre lake for retriever training and youth fishing, and a modern RV park with water and electrical hookups. Future developments will include up to 25 miles of equestrian and pedestrian trails. “We like to say Grand Island is halfway to everyone in the U.S., which makes HPSP convenient for shooting events of all kinds,” says Bill Starkey, superintendant, HPSP. “And with an army of staffing available, HPSP has the manpower to make any shooting event succeed beyond your wildest expectations.” JOHN ANKENEY SOCCER COMPLEX, GREENE COUNTY, OHIO In the sporting world, soccer events are some of the biggest around. When you’re coordinating hundreds of players and their families, having a facility that can handle anything is crucial. Welcome to John Ankeney Soccer Complex. On 65 acres, with up to 35 fields, the John Ankeney Soccer Complex can host nearly any tournament in one easy-tofind location. The Complex offers over 1,200 parking spaces, two concession stands and an outdoor covered pavilion with grills and restrooms. A recent major capital investment allowed installation of in-ground irrigation throughout the complex to provide the best year-round playing surface possible. “We’ve got everything you might need for any event at our facility,” says John Ankeney, executive director, John Ankeney Soccer Complex. “And after the game, hungry soccer players won’t have to travel a half-hour to find something to eat either. There are over sixty restaurants within eight miles, as well as 1,500 hotel rooms and two major shopping centers.” Besides being a great place to play soccer, the John Ankeney Soccer Complex sits right in the middle of all of Greene County’s attractions, including The National Museum of the United States Air Force, the Young’s Jersey Dairy and King’s Island Amusement Park. HEB TENNIS CENTER, HARLINGEN, TEXAS In Texas, tennis has a special home, and that home is called the HEB Tennis Center. The HEB Tennis Center boasts 21 lighted, Laykold surface outdoor tennis courts as well as a pro shop, lounge and full locker room facilities. The Mildred and Lloyd Sessions Tennis Pavilion, a recent addition, is a $1.4 million facility housing three covered courts, new locker rooms and bleacher seating for the covered courts and an observation deck overlooking four outdoor courts. The HEB Tennis Center has hosted the Southwest Conference championships and the NCAA Men’s Division I national championship and annually hosts over 15 adult and junior tournaments. Located within 15 minutes of all of Harlingen’s many restaurants, hotels and attractions, these first-class tennis facilities offer more than just tennis: the HEB Tennis Center also features a renovated covered pavilion, playground, two basketball courts, a covered pool, and a multiuse athletic field. “Harlingen is the center for sports action in the Rio Grande Valley, with stateof- the-art facilities to suit any team,” says Nydia O. Tapia Gonzales, executive director, Harlingen CVB. “Just minutes from the beach and Mexico, our sub-tropical climate allows for year-round sports action ranging from softball and soccer to golf and tennis.” VIAERO EVENT CENTER, KEARENY, NEBRASKA In Kearney, Nebraska, there’s an event facility that can handle pretty much anything: The Viaero Event Center. Viaero’s 17,000 square feet of arena floor space can accommodate a range of events. If basketball’s your game, Viaero features a regulation basketball court. But if hockey’s your sport, Viaero’s got that covered with a 200 ft. By 84 ft. Regulation hockey rink. Volleyball? Check. Wrestling? Check. And for events that require exhibit or conference space, Viaero offers 54,000 square feet of flexible space. The facility also features several 20-30 person suites, many equipped with telephone, fax hook-up and television, that make ideal dressing rooms or event management headquarters, as well as a 50 ft. By 130 ft. VIP room that overlooks the entire arena. The list of amenities goes on and on, but includes seating for On 65 acres, with up to 35 fields, the John Ankeney Soccer Complex can host nearly any tournament in one easy-tofind location. The Complex offers over 1,200 parking spaces, two concession stands and an outdoor covered pavilion with grills and restrooms. A recent major capital investment allowed installation of in-ground irrigation throughout the complex to provide the best year-round playing surface possible. “We’ve got everything you might need for any event at our facility,” says John Ankeney, executive director, John Ankeney Soccer Complex. “And after the game, hungry soccer players won’t have to travel a half-hour to find something to eat either. There are over sixty restaurants within eight miles, as well as 1,500 hotel rooms and two major shopping centers.” Besides being a great place to play soccer, the John Ankeney Soccer Complex sits right in the middle of all of Greene County’s attractions, including The National Museum of the United States Air Force, the Young’s Jersey Dairy and King’s Island Amusement Park. HEB TENNIS CENTER, HARLINGEN, TEXAS In Texas, tennis has a special home, and that home is called the HEB Tennis Center. The HEB Tennis Center boasts 21 lighted, Laykold surface outdoor tennis courts as well as a pro shop, lounge and full locker room facilities. The Mildred and Lloyd Sessions Tennis Pavilion, a recent addition, is a $1.4 million facility housing three covered courts, new locker rooms and bleacher seating for the covered courts and an observation deck overlooking four outdoor courts. The HEB Tennis Center has hosted the Southwest Conference championships and the NCAA Men’s Division I national championship and annually hosts over 15 adult and junior tournaments. Located within 15 minutes of all of Harlingen’s many restaurants, hotels and attractions, these first-class tennis facilities offer more than just tennis: the HEB Tennis Center also features a renovated covered pavilion, playground, two basketball courts, a covered pool, and a multiuse athletic field. “Harlingen is the center for sports action in the Rio Grande Valley, with stateof- the-art facilities to suit any team,” says Nydia O. Tapia Gonzales, executive director, Harlingen CVB. “Just minutes from the beach and Mexico, our sub-tropical climate allows for year-round sports action ranging from softball and soccer to golf and tennis.” VIAERO EVENT CENTER, KEARENY, NEBRASKA In Kearney, Nebraska, there’s an event facility that can handle pretty much anything: The Viaero Event Center. Viaero’s 17,000 square feet of arena floor space can accommodate a range of events. If basketball’s your game, Viaero features a regulation basketball court. But if hockey’s your sport, Viaero’s got that covered with a 200 ft. By 84 ft. Regulation hockey rink. Volleyball? Check. Wrestling? Check. And for events that require exhibit or conference space, Viaero offers 54,000 square feet of flexible space. The facility also features several 20-30 person suites, many equipped with telephone, fax hook-up and television, that make ideal dressing rooms or event management headquarters, as well as a 50 ft. By 130 ft. VIP room that overlooks the entire arena. The list of amenities goes on and on, but includes seating for 4,020, four locker rooms, six full-service concession stands and a Daktronic Scoreboard. “Viaero Event Center is a prime location for a variety of entertainment and sporting functions,” says Greg Shea, President, Viaero Event Center. “The City of Kearney is centrally located, making this venue the best choice for traveling fans and competitors, with a variety of motels and restaurants as well as great attractions just minutes away.” PATRIOT PARK, MICHIGAN CITY, INDIANA If you want to see what an awardwinning facility looks like, head over to Indiana. Patriot Park, a 120-acre youth and adult facility for baseball, softball and soccer events, has won the National Softball Association/Baseball Players Association “Outstanding Park Award” every year of its existence. And things are just getting better; since opening in 2001, the Park has added a fifth baseball/ softball field and expanded its soccer facilities. Michigan City’s multisport gem also offers a range of features, including four fields with professional field lighting, five fields with electronic scoreboards, a press box, playground and concessions stand. Additionally, green space surrounds each field, offering exhibition space. “In all, Patriot Park is a beautiful place to visit in the summer months to catch a game or enjoy a positive atmosphere,” says Jeremy Kienitz, recreation director, Michigan City Parks. “Patriot Park is fortunate to have a well-trained staff in place who are at the park every day and take great pride in the upkeep of the playing fields.” In 2007 & 2009 Patriot Park played host to the week-long, 75-team 12 & under NSA Youth Girls Fast Pitch World Series and in 2010, Patriot Park will host two major USSSA baseball tournaments. RAILROAD PARK, LEWISVILLE, TEXAS Texas knows sports, and few sports facilities exhibit that better than Lewisville’s new Railroad Park, which opened in October 2009. The 269-acre Railroad Park athletic complex combines outstanding sports fields and facilities with a parks department that provides top-of-the-line maintenance and personalized on-site support for events held at the complex. Railroad Park features eight lighted soccer fields with championship-quality hybrid turf and shade-covered bleacher seating; four football fields with scoreboards; four baseball/softball f ields with 400-foot outfield fences; three concession buildings with covered patios; three man-made lakes; a 1.5- mile walking trail. “Railroad Park brings a lot of firsts to Lewisville, including the city’s first skate park and the city’s first dog park,” says Bob Monaghan, parks and leisure services director, City of Lewisville. “In addition, free WiFi service will be available throughout the park starting May 2010. ” The park also offers three concession buildings with covered seating, exterior ceiling fans and full restroom facilities, as well as parking for 1,200 cars. Railroad Park recently hosted the March 2010 Panda Cup International Soccer Tournament with elite youth teams and four college varsity women’s teams, and will host the NCAA Division III league American Southwest Conference’s Women’s Softball Championship tournament in May 2010. MITCHEL ATHLETIC COMPLEX, LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK Mitchel Athletic Complex is a versatile, 49-acre sports complex that provides a spectacular, professional setting for a full range of popular sports. The complex dates back to the ‘70s, but has gone through several renovations. “Most recently, Mitchel received a major renovation in preparation for the 1998 Goodwill Games, which drew 1,500 athletes from 60 countries to Nassau County,” says Jennifer Rothman, sales manager, Long Island CVB. “At the time, the facility received a $22 million investment, including stadium renovations and construction of a field house and other athletic fields.” Located close to a variety of restaurants, Nassau County’s 5,555 hotel rooms, and opposite the Long Island Children’s and Aviation museums, Mitchel includes eight athletic fields suitable for baseball, football, soccer and lacrosse events and a nine-lane track and field stadium. With 6,000 permanent seats, expand Able to 10,000, and seating for 100 at all other fields, Mitchel Athletic Complex is ideal for events of any size. The stadium and fields at Mitchel are used by college Division 1 lacrosse teams, Nassau Community College football and baseball teams and international soccer teams. Local high school track and field, football, soccer and lacrosse teams play their tournaments at Mitchel Athletic Complex as well. HUFFHINES SPORTS COMPLEX, RICHARDSON, TEXAS In 2010, Richardson, Texas, revealed its newest first-class sports facility, Huffhines Sports Complex, a multiuse state-of-the-art league and tournament facility that offers high quality softball and soccer fields ideal for state and national tournaments. Located approximately two Miles east of Hwy. 75 near numerous hotels and Dart rail stations that access downtown Dallas, the park offers a central, highly accessible site. Offering five lighted softball fields, four with scoreboards, and two lighted soccer fields, Huffhines Sports Complex provides a range of event-friendly features, including seating for 250, ample parking, a pavilion for picnics, restrooms for men, women and families, and a play-Expandground. The Huffhines facility is also part of the U.S. Green Building Program’s LEED certification program, featuring passive lighting to reduce energy costs and a number of environmentally friendly design features and building practices. “Event participants will appreciate the convenient location,” says Chris Cottone, Richardson Parks and Recreation. “Huffhines Park puts your event in a convenient location, while also giving participants easy access to all of Dallas’ attractions and amenities, including Sherrill park Golf Course, the Dallas Zoo, Six Flags, Eisemann Center for Performing Arts, the American Airlines Center and the Dallas World Aquarium.” SHREVEPORT CONVENTION CENTER, SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA Events in Shreveport get the celebrity treatment, especially when they’re hosted by the Shreveport Convention Center. As Louisiana’s second largest convention center and the largest facility at the heart of the region that connects Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas, the Shreveport Convention Center is truly the “center” of the Ark-La-Tex: a hub of professional, medical, recreational and technological activity. “The Shreveport Convention center is truly a first-class home for any event,” says Erika Fregoso Roberts, director of sales and marketing, Shreveport Convention Center. “Located just blocks from the Center are the dancing Water fountains in River View Park. Nearby on the riverfront is the Sci-Port Discovery Center, and outdoor recreational opportunities abound from golfing and jogging to boating and fishing.” The Shreveport Convention Center features 350,000-plus square feet of flexible meeting space, 96,000 square feet of column-free exhibit hall—perfect for events that require unlimited lines of sight— an 18,000 square foot ballroom and 36,000 square feet of meeting room space. Located three hours east of Dallas and west of Jackson, Miss., where I-20 and I- 49 intersect, the Shreveport Convention Center is close to more than 1,000 hotel rooms within blocks of the facility, including four-star casino hotels and the 313-room Hilton Hotel. DEVOS PLACE CONVENTION CENTER, GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN DeVos Place is downtown Grand Rapids’ premier convention center. Nestled beside the Grand River, the picturesque setting offers the perfect backdrop SPECIAL REPORT > FACILITIES (CONTINUED FROM PAGE 85) for any sporting event as well as a convenient downtown location for walkable access to everything event goers might need. “With one million square feet of subdividable space on a 13-acre site, DeVos Place is capable of hosting events large and small,” says Mike Gusweiler, executive director, West Michigan Sports Commission. “DeVos Place is connected to three downtown hotels via enclosed, elevated skywalk, and it’s just around the corner from more than 75 restaurants, nightclubs, museums and other entertainment options.” Consumers Energy, May 2009, named Grand Rapids its Green Generation Customer of the Year, and DeVos Place is just another reason why. The Convention Center reduces energy costs and water use by 40 percent with automated faucets and flushing systems and has a membrane style roof that reflects heat away from building. DeVos Place’s single- stream recycling program ensures that the facility produces minimal waste, as well. Home to a variety of events, including the USA Judo President’s Cup and the USA Table Tennis US Open, DeVos Place has the facility and the expertise to make any event truly spectacular. INTRUST BANK ARENA, WICHITA, KANSAS INTRUST Bank Arena is a state-ofthe- art facility in the heart of downtown Wichita. Featuring 22 suites, 2 party suites, 40 loge boxes and over 300 premium seats, the Arena can seat more than 15,000 guests for a variety of events. INTRUST Bank Arena is owned by Sedgwick County Government and managed by SMG, the world leader in venue management, marketing and development. “INTRUST Bank Arena is the premier arena in the Midwest,” says Scott Neal, assistant general manager, INTRUST Bank Arena. “A modern, state-of-the-art sports and entertainment venue, INTRUST Bank Arena is the perfect home for any event, from concerts and family Shows to sporting events, rodeos and conventions.” INTRUST features 14 concession stands, a press interview room, pre-function room, and the Cox Lounge, as well as an LED High-Resolution Scoreboard, LED Scoring/Advertising, LED Ribbon board and LED Marquee. Home of the Wichita Thunder hockey team, INTRUST Bank Arena has also hosted the Harlem Globetrotters, and the Kansas State High School Activities Association 5A-6A State Wrestling Tournament. In May 2010, it will host a Professional Bull Riders tour event, and the facility has been selected for first and second round games for the 2011 NCAA Women’s Division I Basketball Championship. KNOXVILLE CONVENTION CENTER, KNOXVILLE, TENNESSEE With 500,000 square feet of flexible event space and several hotel properties less than three blocks from the facility, the Knoxville Convention Center offers the perfect foundation to make any event a huge success. Conveniently located within walking distance to over 60 restaurants, the Convention Center is also in close proximity to attractions such as Volunteer Landing, the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame and World’s Fair Park. “The city of Knoxville, just minutes away from the Great Smoky Mountains, is undoubtedly one of the country’s most beautiful areas, and our Convention Center is the perfect location for your next event,” says Jennifer Morris, sports sales manager of the Knoxville Tourism & Sports Corporation. “Not only will attendees and competitors experience a premier venue located in the heart of downtown Knoxville, but they’ll also encounter numerous activities around every corner.” The Convention Center offers a PA system throughout and 120,000 square feet of continuous space in a dividable hall and features a loading dock with nine truck bays and drive-on floor access. Having been transformed into everything from soccer fields to bowling alleys, the Center hosts numerous stand-out events, including Flip Fest Invitational, an annual 2,700-athlete gymnastics competition, as well as the 2007 AAU Junior Olympics. SAVANNAH INTERNATIONAL TRADE & CONVENTION CENTER, SAVANNAH, GEORGIA You might think a convention center is just a convention center, but not when it’s Savannah’s award-winning International Trade & Convention Center, an architecturally stunning 330,000 square-foot waterfront complex on the historic Savannah River. The Savannah International Trade & Convention Center is multi-purpose facility that allows for a diverse array of events. The Center features 100,000 square feet of divisible exhibit space, 50,000 square feet of prime meeting space, including 13 meeting rooms, four executive board rooms, a 25,000 square-foot grand ballroom and a state-of-the-art 367-seat auditorium. Close to the airport and located within a gracious, easily maneuverable city landscape, the Savannah International Trade & Convention Center puts guests in close proximity to a diverse range of dining options for every price and palate and more than 2,000 hotel rooms with flexible packages and rates. “The International Trade & Convention Center offers exceptional functionality and service, which definitely gives us an advantage in the southeast for attracting sports events,” says Fredia Brady, SMG senior director of sales and marketing, Savannah International Trade & Convention Center. “And to top that off, we also have the beauty and excitement of Savannah, one of Travel+Leisure’s Top Ten Places to Visit in North America.” TIGER ATHLETIC COMPLEX, BENTONVILLE, ARKANSAS Tiger Athletic Complex is a state-of-theart, college-like sports complex featuring a 7000-seat football stadium with press box and jumbotron, a 2000-seat Soccer Field and Track stadium, as well as an 82,000 square-foot indoor multi-purpose facility featuring an 80 by 60 yard indoor turf room, four locker rooms, 1,500 square-foot staff development room, athletic training room and weight room. Host of the Primetime Sports Basketball Tournament, Tiger Athletic Complex also houses baseball and softball stadiums, a basketball arena as well as volleyball and basketball courts. “TAC, as it’s frequently called, gives high school and youth athletes the opportunity to play in a stadium that rivals regional college facilities,” says Blair Cromwell, vice president of sales, Bentonville Convention and Visitors Bureau. “That’s what makes TAC a favorite of many youth athletic competitions every year.” Featured in ESPN’s Outside the Lines in 2006, TAC enables event owners to adapt these indoor and outdoor facilities to a multitude of traditional and non-traditional sporting events. The facilities are all within walking distance of each other and less that one mile from Bentonville’s “hotel row,” where Bentonville’s many hoteliers offer special events and offerings for visiting sports teams, such as movie nights and special laundry services. TD BANK BALLPARK, BRIDGEWATER, NEW JERSEY TD Bank Ballpark, “The Jewel of The Atlantic League,” opened its gates on June 7, 1999. Home of the five-time Atlantic League champion Somerset Patriots, TD Bank Ballpark is a conveniently located, exceptional facility that’s a favorite of fans and athletes alike. “Over the past ten years, the Somerset Patriots have helped TD Bank Ballpark become one of Central New Jersey’s premier family and community destinations,” says Marc Russinoff, vice president of public relations, Somerset Patriots. TD Bank Ballpark is a 6,100-seat facility with one of the most well-kept Major League-caliber fields in all of baseball. The park features seats with backs and cup holders, offering fans every comfort when enjoying an event from the Premium Field Box, Field Box and Upper Box seating areas. Additional amenities include the Picnic Area, the Executive Party Deck, and the facility’s twenty luxury suites, which offer balcony seating for fans to watch games outdoors. Designed to be a multi-use facility, TD Bank Ballpark hosts 70 Somerset Patriots home games each year, as well as serving as the site for high school baseball championships, college baseball championship tournaments. The field has also been used for Women’s Professional Soccer, Major League Lacrosse, and Professional Cricket. THE CLUB AT OLDE STONE, BOWLING GREEN, KENTUCKY Ranked on Golfweek’s 2010 Top 100 Modern Courses, Olde Stone is truly a unique and dramatic golf venue and is befitting of many types of events. “There are no gimmicky holes or unfair obstacles – the course lays out in front of the player and all of the inherent strategies are reinforced with the top-level conditioning,” says Julie Denton, director of sales and marketing, The Club at Olde Stone. “The holes are well balanced with varied tee shot angles, approach lengths and recovery opportunities.” Designed by internationally acclaimed golf architect Arthur Hills, Olde Stone was created with a deep respect for the land. Hills was given free reign to create a masterpiece on terrain that he describes as “one of the absolute best sites we’ve worked on.” Olde Stone has an ample length of 7,333 yards, course rating of 75.8 and slope of 139. Cool season bentgrass is found on tees, greens and fairways in a warm season climate, which is unique, and the Kentucky bluegrass rough is healthy and dense. The course is in championship condition every day with normal green speeds in excess of 12. The facility has excellent gallery viewing throughout with ample space for staging, concessions, bleachers, etc. THE POINTE, FORT MILL, SOUTH CAROLINA The place to go for small to medium sporting events, Fort Mill’s new performing arts and recreation center, The Pointe, has hosted concerts, theatre, high school graduations, a dance competition, banquets, fundraisers, Upward sports outreach, consignment sales, weddings, college and high school basketball and volleyball games, cheerleading competitions with more than 4,000 in attendance, and seminars, including an appearance by John Eldredge with over 1,700 guests. “We have the flexibility to host virtually any kind of event, from national athletic completions to everyday practice sessions, wrestling tournaments to chess tournaments,” says Craig Cox of The Pointe’s administrative staff. “The Pointe is a unique state-of-the-art facility where participants and fans can play, watch and enjoy.” The Pointe features a 10-person conference room, two 30-40 person meeting rooms, two large meeting rooms with 300 seats each and 27,000 square feet of exhibit space. Additionally, The Pointe offers a backstage green room with bathrooms, along with four locker rooms for larger productions. It also has four large concession stands run professionally by Chef Herb Productions. Conveniently located near more than 20 hotels and a variety of dining options, The Pointe is just one exit south of Carowinds Amusement Park and next to the Charlotte Knights Baseball Stadium.
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