Improving communities through sport

Non-Sporting Events to Host at Your Recreation Center

crowd sitting in recreation center auditorium for a talk or screening

Reach New Crowds by Hosting These Events at Your Recreation Center

Even if attendance at your recreation center is doing well and regular attendees are showing up and enjoying your facilities, you can always attract new members and attendees by hosting different kinds of events. Many facilities know that sports are proven to pull crowds. They will host basketball, baseball, volleyball, tennis, and swimming competitions because they know that families will show up to support their teams or favorite players. Those families will use the concession stands, visit area businesses, and put money into the community overall.

But reaching out to new audiences can boost your attendance and revenue. And perhaps more importantly, it will build a better rapport with your clientele. At Sports Facilities Management, we are always looking for and innovating new ways for a sports complex or recreation center to improve its community engagement, because the benefits go well beyond greater attendance numbers. When you begin hosting non-sporting events, you tell people of all interests that they are welcome. And when people from all backgrounds are meeting and mingling in your recreation center, the community becomes closer, friendlier, and happier.

Here we at Sports Facilities Management discuss 3 events you should consider hosting to reach out to new potential members.


Many urban centers have local symphonies. By partnering with one near you, you can put together an event that benefits both your center, the symphony, and the residents around you. And if you have an outdoor lawn, why not consider hosting a small outdoor symphony for a springtime event? The music is a great way to enjoy the return of everyone’s favorite season. For indoor symphonies or concerts, you may want to look into purchasing some sound-dampening foam for your auditorium or gym space, because the sound will have a tendency to echo in rooms with high ceilings, which will affect the overall quality of the sound.
And sound-dampening foam can be a great investment that opens you up to hosting a variety of non-sporting events.

Movie Screenings

Filmmaker Terrence Malick, known for movies such as “The Thin Red Line” and “The Tree of Life,” premiered his 2012 film “To the Wonder” at his hometown recreation center. The event brought a major film director to the small town of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. An event like this engages movie-lovers, film fanatics, and members of the community interested in local art. With a bit of proper setup, including a projector, projector screen, seating, and concessions, you can easily turn a large meeting room or gym into a screening room. Other fun “cult” films will draw enthusiastic crowds who love the experience of watching a movie with a room full of other fans.

Local Festivals

Seasonal festivals can be fun for everyone. Craft fairs and art festivals bring together artisans, food trucks, musicians, and all manner of community members who want to check out the scene. While these events require a bit of coordination to set up tents and booths, maybe an outdoor stage, you can host them for a weekend and they do a lot to bring the community together, all on the grounds of your recreation center.

Get Help for Your Recreation Center from Sports Facilities Advisory

Sports Facilities Management helps you bring in new clientele for your recreation center by helping you plan and develop events, find event funding, and more. To inquire about our services, please give us a call. We love working with new clients because it means we get to work out new problems while helping communities grow together.

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