Improving communities through sport


January 10, 2023

After analyzing over 2,000 communities over the last 20 years, The Sports Facilities Companies has predicted that the $39.7 billion youth and amateur travel sports and the $218 billion parks and recreation industries are colliding. They also predict that local government assets that are currently being operated by the parks department will require new models of operation and management to keep up with the demands of the private sector. With a 33% increase in the number of studies conducted for facilities from municipal clients, the evidence of the shift is already clear.

December 5, 2022

After Sand Mountain Park and Amphitheater’s first full year of full operation, they have brought in an estimated $23.2 million in economic impact. The park has not only generated increased revenue in the area, but also increased interest in the area by developers in the retail, hospitality, and entertainment industries. The increased revenue and interest was generated by the more than 100 events held at the facility over the past year including 62 sports tournaments, 11 concerts, and numerous community-oriented events. The park and the events that it held brought in more than 1 million unique guests and 1,750 teams from the all over the country.

December 5, 2022

Rocky Top Sports World has signed a 3-year deal with Big Shots Basketball Tournaments which will last through 2025. The facility currently hosts 2 Big Shots tournaments every spring and they will continue to do so. The tournaments attract 235 basketball teams of boys in divisions 10U to 17U that have brought in over $2.3 million in economic impact in previous years. In addition to high quality basketball tournaments, Big Shots also offers recruiting services and scholarships for those in attendance. And they also have a partnership with BALLERtv to livestream the tournaments for friends and families that can’t make it in-person. The next Big Shot tournaments at Rocky Top Sports World are the Rocky Top Tip-Off happening April 1-2 in 2023 and Rocky Top Mayhem which is held May 20-21 in 2023.

November 28, 2022

Sand Mountain Park and Amphitheater is now home to the regions largest outdoor ice skating rink, after 18 months of work on the project. The rink is 100 feet by 40 feet and features real ice. It opened on November 18th of 2022 and it will remain open until January 14th of 2023. The facility isn’t normally open during the off-season but the ice rink and it’s amenities will now fill that gap. To accompany the rink there is a snack cart, a private tent for parties, and 4 igloos for adults to use. Admission to the rink is $12 and ice skate rentals are included in the ticket price, but if you bring your own skates you can purchase a ticket for only $6.

October 17, 2022

Elizabethtown Sports Park will be one of the four facilities to host the Ripken Experience in 2023. The event will be held from April to October and it will offer youth baseball and softball players to experience what it would be like to play in the major leagues. The event is expected to host 1,500 different teams and bring in over 100,000 people to the park over the seven months that it will be running. The Ripken Experience will be leaving a lasting impact on the players and family members of players who attend as well as making a huge economic impact on the Elizabethtown community.

September 30, 2022

Sand Mountain Park & Amphitheater will soon be home to the largest real outdoor ice rink in north Alabama. Starting on November 18th, construction will begin on the new Sand Mountain Skate. The rink will be 4,000 square feet and will be large enough to fit 375 skaters at once. The rink will host public skate sessions, birthday parties, corporate events, holiday light shows, Santa Claus appearances, and movie showings. Rentals will be available for skates and skating aids and there will even be a concession stand and bar for onlookers to enjoy.

September 24, 2022

The Bridge Sports Complex hosted the 5th annual West Virginia Diabetic Walk for Wellness last Saturday. The event was hosted by Webster Insurance Agency and it was meant to promote diabetic wellness while raising awareness through education. The Inited Hospital Center provided a display that shows how much sugar is in some items that we consume often. All donations from the event were sent to the Diabetic Association to help pay for testing, equipment, and anything to find a cure.

September 19, 2022

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RJWUH) Somerset has officially opened a new location inside of Iron Peak Sports & Events. The RWJBarnabas health facility is bringing their health services to New Jersey’s premiere sports, events, and family entertainment venue to offer athletic training and community health initiatives to the Hillsborough, NJ area and visiting athletes. The location will serve as a place for Iron Peak’s athletes and partners to receive athletic training services and for the RWJUH Somerset Community Health Department to use for community outreach initiatives such as education programs and health screenings.

September 8, 2022

Back in 2021, MetroFamily Magazine announced their list of the best family friendly businesses in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area. On that list of 2021 Family Favorites, Pelican Bay Aquatic Center was named the “Best Place to Swim”. The facility was also named one of the “Three Best Amusement Parks” in Oklahoma City by the experts at “Three Best Rated”. Pelican Bay Aquatic Center features two 150 ft. water slides, diving boards, a current channel, an aquatic climbing wall, a splash pool, playground, concessions, and bathhouses.

September 8, 2022

Legends Event Center in Bryan, Texas is on track to open this year. The $40 million, 120,000-square-foot facility is scheduled to be finished by December 2nd of this year. The facility will feature 8 basketball courts, 16 volleyball courts, an arcade, a turf area for special programming, meeting/party rooms, concessions, a kitchen for catering companies, a lake, and an outdoor patio area. The facility has already partnered with one of the largest volleyball clubs, Houston Skyline BCS, so there will be several teams of young ladies competing in the facility on the day that the doors open.

September 1, 2022

The Southeastern Conference (SEC) and the city of Hoover have agreed in principle to extend the SEC Baseball Tournament at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium for at least 2 more years through 2024. The contract was originally set to expire in 2021, but since the tournament was cancelled in 2020, the two parties agreed to keep the agreement in place for the 2022 tournament. The 2022 tournament championship game was between the Florida Gators and the Tennessee Volunteers and it drew a crowd of 13,270 people to the Hoover Met Stadium. Now the SEC and the city of Hoover have agreed to a new two-year extension which will last through the 2024 season.

August 17, 2022

Rocky Top Sports World has set a new economic impact record for the second year in a row. In the 2020-2021 fiscal year, the complex contributed $46.9 million in economic impact, but in the 2021-2022 fiscal year they contributed $55.6 million in economic impact! The facility hosted more than 75 tournaments and camps during the year including the Kohl’s Kicking National Elite Camp and National Scholarship Camp. Kohl’s Kicking Camps brought in athletes from 3 divisions including professional, collegiate, and high school. In just their 8th year of business, Rocky Top Sports World has grown to become one of the nations most attractive venues for travel sports bringing people from nearly all 50 states and several countries down to Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

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