The SODA Blog

The official blog of the Sportsplex Operators & Developers Association

BEACON Athletics Weekly Updates / And Deals ! (Feb.’19)

February 2019

To get your field ready for play, there are ways to

Ensure Base Safety.

A well-maintained ballfield has a smooth surface, both on grass and skinned areas. But in contrast stand the bases, protruding up from the smooth surface. One wrong step, one improper slide, and injury can occur. It is up to the groundskeeper to minimize that risk... Continue brushing up on base safety & care at our Groundskeeper University lesson, “107. Base Placement & Care“…
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OVERLOAD PROTECTION
It’s what makes TUFFframe batting cages “elite”.

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PROTECT YOUR CREW: Protective Gloves

Youngstown Anti-Vibe XT Gloves
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Youngstown Carpenter Plus
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Save 20% Thru Friday

Custom printed windscreen will look amazing. We’ll make it easy. Contact us and we’ll set you up with the right windscreen for your facility. Save 20% on custom printed windscreen through Feb. 15, 2019.
Go to Windscreen

FEATURED PROJECT

The Bleacher Defender

— VERONA LITTLE LEAGUE  |  VERONA, WI

When fields are in close proximity, foul balls can be a risk to all spectators. See how we solved this problem for the Verona Little League with our smart and cost-effective Bleacher Defender.

Go to Featured Project
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Learn More About Beacon’s Project Services

O P E N   B O X    S P E C I A L

The Bottle Buddy
Reg. $69 — NOW ONLY $50  SAVE $19!


This is just smart. Umpires love it. Keep 20 oz. bottles cooler and dust free, and they’re only accessible from inside the fence. Discontinued item, limited quantities. Like-new condition.
View Open Box Product
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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

1-800-622-7370

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada 

Since 1981”

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Study predicts $15M in spending from proposed Windsor Locks sports complex !

Talks for sports complex called off

An artist’s rendering of the huge sports complex proposed for the 76-acre site in Windsor Locks shows two hotels, a stadium, and indoor space for 16 basketball courts, restaurants, and a movie theater.

WINDSOR LOCKS, CT. — An economic impact study commissioned by developer JABS Sports Management LLC says the company’s planned sports complex at the intersection of Route 20 and Interstate 91 would generate $15 million in local spending in its first year of operation.

That number, the study said, would grow to $27 million in five years.

The study, conducted by the consulting firm Sports Facilities Advisory, analyzed the number of people who would travel 90 minutes or more to Windsor Locks to use the facility, as well as how many would stay overnight in local hotels.

The sports complex is to include a 200,000-square-foot indoor facility with 15 basketball courts, 30 volleyball courts cross-lined over the basketball courts, offices, viewing areas, and concession stands.

A proposed 20-acre outdoor portion would have eight multipurpose synthetic turf fields and a multipurpose grass field with seating for 5,000.

First Selectman Christopher Kervick has said the complex, which would host sports games for traveling student athletes and their families, would allow the town to cash in on a growing industry of “sports tourism.”

According to the economic impact study, a person traveling to Windsor Locks to visit the sports complex will spend an average of $113 per day, with the most significant spending items being lodging and dining or groceries.

In the facility’s first year of operation, Sports Facilities Advisory expects nearly 33,000 additional “room nights” to be booked in hotels, but that number is expected to grow to nearly 58,000 by year five.

“For a community of nine square miles and 12,500 people, that is a tremendous economic impact,” Andrew Borgia, principal of JABS Sports Management, said in a statement.

Kervick said the results are “in line with the actual results that are being experienced by other communities around the country that have invested in similar facilities, and (the study) makes a compelling argument for entering into a public-private partnership with the developer to secure this opportunity for our town.”

Kervick has said the project hinges on approval of the creation of a tax-increment financing district by a town meeting vote. Under such a district, the town would subsidize the project’s development using property tax revenue generated by the project itself.

If voters approve, the town will grant “a substantial rebate in annual property taxes, but we still realize a tremendous increase in tax revenue compared to what we currently receive on the property,” Kervick said.

Alternative uses for the property still would not generate such significant revenue, he said.

As the sports complex plans progress and the developer pursues various town approvals, Kervick has been pushing for state legislation that would allow towns to keep a portion of the revenue generated by state hotel room occupancy taxes.

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

1-800-622-7370

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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New sports complex opens in Columbus, GA. !

COLUMBUS, GA – On Saturday, athletes from across the city gathered as owners held a grand opening for the new Columbus Sports and Training Complex.

The new 12,000 sq. ft. facility will offer a variety of sports programs and workshops for area youths.

Along with sports classes they will also offer weight training, conditioning, and aerobics.

The new building features a universal sports court, indoor turf, batting cages, aerobics rooms, and more.

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

1-800-622-7370

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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Visalia enters final inning of sports complex !

City Council breaks ground on fifth and final phase of Riverway Sports Park to add a softball complex, lights to soccer fields, new picnic arbor and more parking !

VISALIA – With a cap in hand, standing in the middle of a dirt lot, Mayor Bob Link told the crowd at the Riverway Sports Park, “Let’s play ball!”

Before too long, that’s exactly what will be happening at Riverway Sports Park as Link’s comments came during a Jan. 23 groundbreaking ceremony for the fifth and final phase of the city’s sports complex at the corner of Giddings Street and Shannon Parkway.

“Visalia has softball and baseball in our blood, and I know the love of the game firsthand from my days as a batboy with our professional ball club and my days cheering on my daughters in softball,” shared Mayor Bob Link. “It’s that same energy that I feel here today as we get ready to break ground.”

The Visalia City Council was joined by the Parks & Recreation Commission, representatives from the office of Senator Shannon Grove, the Tulare County Board of Supervisors, the Visalia Unified School District and local sports organizations, broke ground on the newest addition to Riverway Sports Park.

Phase V of the Riverway Sports Park will add a four-field softball stadium, install lights to the northern soccer fields, add a new picnic arbor and more parking.

Phase V will develop the remaining 18 acres of the 84-acres sports complex and will include:

• Four-field softball complex that will be designed to match the existing CR Shannon Baseball Complex with a restroom and concession facility.

• The addition of LED lights to the five soccer fields on the north side of the park.

• A new well which will not only support the new softball complex, but will also irrigate the CR Shannon Baseball Complex and some of the common, landscaped areas of the Park.

• A Musco Controller to control the athletic field lights, interior park lighting and electrical outlets.

• A new picnic arbor.

• A central parking lot, which will be constructed adjacent to the park’s special event area and will contain 123 parking stalls.

With construction starting now, crews will begin the transformation.

“I look forward to welcoming everyone back here to this same spot to celebrate the grand opening of this new phase in 2020,” added Link.

Fred Lampe, project engineer, said Phase V will cost a total of $12.8 million from design to completion. The bids for construction of Phase V were 28% over the city engineer’s estimate. The low bidder was Forcum/mackey Construction in Ivanhoe with an overall bid of $9.1 million for four softball fields with lighting, a concession/restroom facility and landscaping as well as a timed controllers for the lights, a parking lot, picnic structure, and adding lights to the soccer fields on the north side of the sports park.

The Riverway Sports Park Master Plan began in 2001 and Phase I of the project opened 46 acres to the public on Aug. 25, 2007. Phase I included 10 regulation size soccer fields (three were lighted); three large group sheltered picnic areas; two restroom/concession facilities; two playgrounds; one water feature; parking improvements; and a host of other general park amenities. Phase II of the park, roughly 12 acres, opened to the public in the summer of 2010. This phase featured a four field lighted baseball complex that continues to accommodate local, regional, state and national tournament play. The second phase of development also included a large restroom/concession facility; the lighting of two more soccer fields from the phase I project (giving the complex five lighted soccer fields); a BMX complex, new landscaping of shrubs and trees; expanded parking with a new improved parking lot and additional roadway improvements.

The city completed Phase III of the project in 2011 in order for the city to play host to the Cal Ripken World Series, which saw crowds of more than 6,000-people for the championship game. Phase IV of the park opened in November 2013 and included the development of 6 acres located in the central part of the park. These improvements included a new promenade area (financed by the COS Porter Foundation); a large new turf area; a new covered group picnic shelter; a new children’s playground; more shrubs and trees; and additional restrooms. Phase IV also included the repurposing of the former BMX area (1.8 acres) into a turfed area designed to accommodate more youth baseball and soccer play. The renovation of this area was partially financed by a contribution from Saputo Foods.

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

1-800-622-7370

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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$15M sports park opening later this year in Warren County, OH. !

$15M sports park opening later this year in Warren County, Ohio !

The Warren County Sports Park at Union Village is expected to open late this spring.

The development is a $15 million, 120-acre sports complex projected to draw 700,00 people a year to the region.

“It’s nearing completion,” said Phil Smith, president and CEO of the Warren County Convention & Visitors Bureau, the agency managing the county facility.

Rain – and snow – has set back work on the facilities, , Smith said in responses to emailed questions. The complex is under construction near Ohio 741 and Greentree Road, on the northwest corner of the Union Village planned community.

The park is to feature 12 multi-use grass fields, four all-grass baseball diamonds, two multi-purpose synthetic turf fields and two synthetic turf baseball fields, as well as two headquarters buildings, concession stands and restroom facilities. The park will be ringed with walking trails.

Weather permitting, Smith said the complex should open in late spring or early summer.

The Warren County Sports Park at Union Village is expected to open late this spring.

The development is a $15 million, 120-acre sports complex projected to draw 700,00 people a year to the region.

“It’s nearing completion,” said Phil Smith, president and CEO of the Warren County Convention & Visitors Bureau, the agency managing the county facility.

Rain – and snow – has set back work on the facilities, , Smith said in responses to emailed questions. The complex is under construction near Ohio 741 and Greentree Road, on the northwest corner of the Union Village planned community.

The park is to feature 12 multi-use grass fields, four all-grass baseball diamonds, two multi-purpose synthetic turf fields and two synthetic turf baseball fields, as well as two headquarters buildings, concession stands and restroom facilities. The park will be ringed with walking trails.

Weather permitting, Smith said the complex should open in late spring or early summer.

The first phase of the Union Village community is under construction too. It includes the downtown center and more than 100 residences, across Ohio 741 from the Otterbein SeniorLife main campus. Houses should start appearing this summer.

“We’ll complement what they’re doing by providing a great deal of exposure,” Smith said. “Our destination sports park is designed to draw approximately 700,000 visitors annually to Warren County – to shop in our retail stores, dine in our restaurants, and stay in our hotels. We think those visitors will be impressed with Union Village, and we’re excited to be a part of what it will become.”

The sports park includes a west wing, along Ohio 741, and east wing, along Greentree Road, which runs from just outside Lebanon to Interstate 75.

“The west wing is nearly finished, ” Smith said, “and the east wing should be finished by late spring or early summer.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

1-800-622-7370

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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Super Bowl Menu Prices Offer Glimpse Of Sports Concession Future !

Prep for the Super Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Ever since Mercedes-Benz Stadium opened in Atlanta in 2017, the fan-first concession pricing has turned heads. That pricing doesn’t change, whether a Falcons game, a concert or even a Super Bowl. Hot dogs are $2. Refillable sodas: $2. But what we will see for the first time at a Super Bowl on Feb. 3 hasn’t quite caught on everywhere else. But it doesn’t mean it won’t in the future.

“Mercedes-Benz Stadium doesn’t dynamically price food and beverage based on events,” says Greg Beadles, executive vice president and chief operating officer for stadium owner AMB Sports + Entertainment. “All pricing remains the same for any event in the stadium. So, the $2 hot dog will cost the same whether an Atlanta Falcons game, Atlanta United match, concert, college football game, NCAA Final Four or the Super Bowl.”

Since opening the doors to MB Stadium, AMB constructed a new-in-class business agreement with concessionaire Levy. Instead of the traditional model that allowed a concessionaire into a revenue-sharing deal with the team — which often drives up prices — a fixed-price contract gave control to the team.

So, even with a nearly 50 percent drop in food prices compared to the Georgia Dome set-up, fan spending increased 16 percent since the launch with a 53 percent increase in the volume of sales.

“This shows us that fans appreciate the value proposition and quality being offered with our new food and beverage program,” Beadles says.

Along with pricing, the model allows for variety and speed. Not every item in the Super Bowl venue comes with a low-price ticket, allowing fans to choose from their refillable soda and inexpensive hot dog or to hit up one of the local restaurants still represented inside the concourse and spend a bit more on something more unique. Still, though, expect about a dozen items at $5 or less, including $5 cheeseburgers and $3 nachos.

With 30 percent more total transactions in the first full year at MB Stadium compared to the previous year at the Georgia Dome, staff has started setting records, such as 120,357 total food and beverage sales transactions at the College Football Championship game in January 2018.

In 2018, MB Stadium further reduced prices by 12 percent on six of the more popular premium food offerings and introduced an exclusive craft beer in partnership with a local brewery at the same price of a domestic draft, $5 for a 12-ounce and $7 for a 20-ounce.

With pricing at a reasonable scale and variety still locked in throughout the venue, fans have started showing up earlier to games, are spending more (they are also spending more in the retail stores) and buy more often. And all along the way, Beadles says, the stadium continues to get feedback from fans as it evolves its offerings, lopping off underperforming items and bringing in fresh offerings.

“This action has driven a 23 percent higher consumption rate on the (new) items,” he says. “This is just one example of looking to innovate continuously and put our fans first as we strive to maintain our top ranking across the leagues and provide the ultimate event-day experience.”

While this new trend hasn’t created a firestorm across the country yet, it still may. Already it is the norm in Atlanta, as neighboring State Farm Arena now has a similar model in place, which pushed an 80 percent growth in volume compared to the season before.

Mike Plutino, founder of the Food Service Matters consultancy, says he expects many other teams will embrace the fan-first model once contract renewals allow. “Many teams,” he says, “are handcuffed by short-sighed, high-commission concession deals that have limited their editorial control over one of the most important aspects of their fan experience, second only to their team product.”

Not only has the Mercedes-Benz Stadium model proven a financial success, but it has also propelled the Falcons to the top of the NFL’s customer satisfaction ranking system, a win-win for the team.

“We are thrilled to lead by example on this initiative,” Beadles says, “and there’s nothing better for the sports industry than when we can truly do something that makes sense from a financial perspective and it puts the fan first.”

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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BEACON Athletics Sportsfield Products ! [ Jan.’19 ]

There are many options. We’re here to help you with…

Finding the Right Cage.

All of Beacon’s outdoor batting cages are built to last.
To help you select the best fit for your facility, we cut through the confusion. It can be hard to determine which batting cage is the right one for you. To clarify things, we have the distinguishing characteristics are broken out in a handy comparison table. If you have any questions, or if you are ready to get started on a batting cage project, please contact us.
View the Comparison Table
Field Projects Start with Beacon.
Make our Project Services team part of your team. Whether you’re building a new ball field or renovating an existing field, our experienced designers and engineers can help you make your project run more smoothly. The result will be a low-cost, high-quality field that you’ll be proud of.

Contact us at projects@beaconathletics.com to get started.

LEARN MORE About Project Services
You Gotta Take Care of Your Crew.
Safety Matters. Take it from some of our most-seasoned veterans, making sure your crew is able to do their jpbs in a way that is smart and safe is not only good for them, it can help make everyone more productive.

Take gloves, for instance. To most, the human hand is just… a hand. To the groundskeeper? It’s the most important tool you own. Protect your hands from vibration, scrapes, pinches, impact, soil and grease with Beacon’s line of performance work gloves.

View Performance Gloves
SAVE 20% on Custom Printed Windscreen!
 — Offer valid through February 15, 2019 —
We make windscreen printing easy. And custom windscreen will make a noticeable difference. Even simple lettering can have an enormous impact on the professional look of your facility. Our vinyl-coated windscreen is durable and comes in a wide range of team colors. CONTACT US about customized windscreen to bring team branding or sponsorship opportunities to your facility.
SAVE on Custom Printed Windscreen
STMA… and Beyond.

We’re in Phoenix right now for the STMA Conference, so stop at Booth #421 if you are there, too. We’re giving away a free Streamliner 354, so stop in to register to win. We’re also in Chicago for the Parks & Rec Conference… see where we’ll be next.
– – – –
JANUARY 22-25, 2019
Sportsturf Managers Association Conference
Phoenix, AZ
– – – –
JANUARY 24-25, 2019
Illinois Park & Rec Conference
Chicago, IL
VIEW UPCOMING SHOWS
O P E N   B O X   I T E M   O F   T H E    W E E K

Hollywood Kwik Release Double 1st Base
Reg. $139 — NOW ONLY $75  SAVE $64!


Great value with this release double 1st base. Will compress and then disengage from base upon impact, if necessary. Limited quantities. Like-new condition.

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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STATE TO PROVIDE HALF THE FUNDING FOR $44 MILLION SPORTS COMPLEX IN DOWNTOWN UTICA, NY !

A rendering of Nexus Center, a $44 million, “tournament-based,” sports complex that the Upper Mohawk Valley Memorial Auditorium Authority will build in downtown Utica. The state has awarded $22 million to help cover the cost of the project. (Photo credit: Utica Comets website)
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UTICA, N.Y. — The Upper Mohawk Valley Memorial Auditorium Authority will use a $22 million state award for the construction of Nexus Center, a $44 million, “tournament-based,” sports complex in downtown Utica.

This facility will be adjacent to the Adirondack Bank Center, the office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a news release. Adirondack Bank Center is the home of the American Hockey League’s Utica Comets, Utica College men’s and women’s hockey programs, and the Utica Jr. Comets youth-hockey organization.

The 169,440-square-foot Nexus Center will “primarily” host ice hockey, box lacrosse, soccer and other field sports, and “will draw competitive youth teams from across the U.S and Canada,” Cuomo’s office contends.

The Nexus Center is projected to host 24 hockey and 24 lacrosse tournaments each year and is estimated to annually host more than 322,000 visitors who will spend more than $26 million a year during their stay in the Mohawk Valley region, per Cuomo’s news release.

“The Nexus Center is part of our bold vision for making Oneida County a sports, tourism and recreation destination,” Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente, Jr. said in the governor’s release. “I am thankful to Gov. Cuomo for supporting this project with vital funding that will bring the Nexus Center from concept to reality.”

The Nexus Center will feature more than 25 locker rooms, commercial office space, college-classroom space, a retail section, food and beverage services, and other multi-purpose training space.

The facility will focus on out-of-town tournament participants year-round, while catering to local athletes during the week for practices and training. When the Nexus Center is not hosting a tournament or other events, it will function as a community sports and recreation center for area sports organizations, high schools, and colleges.

Future plans for the Nexus Center include expanding to a four-season sporting center, with the potential to add outdoor multi-use sports fields to the north and into the Harbor Point area, “a vision consistent with the Utica Harbor master plan,” per Cuomo’s release.

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It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

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www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .SODA Logo “Proudly Serving The USA/Canada Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

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PlanFinalGuideAd

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“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada

Since 1981”

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Flag football can serve as a safe haven for the game we love !

New London, CT. — They appeared on television during last weekend’s divisional playoffs and they’ll appear again this weekend: infomercials from the National Football League encouraging parents to check out the burgeoning popularity of flag football, maybe the last bastion remaining to save the sport at youth levels.

Overwhelming evidence from the National Federation of State High School Associations suggests that participation levels continue to decline on youth and secondary levels, likely the residual effect of parental fears that stem from concussion injuries.

Ah, but now there’s the alternative, a game that still teaches football, but spares kids at youth levels from getting their eggs scrambled.

Our corner of the world is joining the revolution. Heavy Hitters USA, a local non-profit foundation dedicated to teaching life skills through various athletic endeavors, once sponsored two teams in the league at the Wide World of Indoor Sports in Montville. Heavy Hitters, with teams from New London and Groton, are up to nine teams now and more than 100 kids, including a group headed to Orlando soon for a tournament.

“Parents are scared of having kids hurt,” said Jose Carmona, who organizes the Heavy Hitters teams and has two sons playing. “This gives you the skill level of football. You still learn the game without fear of your kid getting hurt. A different outlet. It builds confidence of the younger kids and gets rid of that fear when it comes time for them to finally wear shoulder pads and helmets.”

Flag football games are 5-on-5 and last an hour. The kids run, run and run more. They learn many skills of football, such as throwing it, running good routes and covering receivers.

Shannon Brenek, whose son, Jake, grew up on flag football, is Heavy Hitters’ executive director, working closely with founder Kent Ward. Jake Brenek was the only St. Bernard student to participate in the high school football tri-operative this past season with Grasso Tech and Norwich Tech.

“It’s great practice,” Shannon Brenek said. “It’s no pressure. I think that’s the best thing about it. Pressure will come sooner or later in football. This is complete fun and he’s learning.”

Flag football’s emergence comes as participation in tackle football has declined. The most recent data (the 2017-18 school year) illustrates a drop in Connecticut from 10,815 kids playing high school football in 2009 to 9,241 in 2017, a 14.6 percent decrease in nine years. Youth level coaches across the region say participation is down as well, amid concern over head injuries.

The Aspen Institute, an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, D.C., wrote a 27-page report recently on the emergence and benefits of flag football, following interviews with doctors, educators, former NFL players and college coaches and surveys from parents, high school and youth coaches, athletic trainers and medical professionals.

“Our overarching conclusion,” the report said, “(is that) children, the game and communities are likely to benefit if flag football becomes the standard way of playing before high school, with modifications. A key modification: Proper tackling technique is taught in practice settings, and in a controlled manner, in the age group leading into it.”

The report found interest increasing nationally, including how “flag football surpassed tackle football as the most commonly played form of the game among children ages 6 to 12, according to annual survey data by the Sports & Fitness Industry Association.” And in Florida, a youth flag league founded by former University of Maryland quarterback John Kaleo has served more than 7,000 kindergarten through middle school-aged children since 2014. It even has a corporate sponsor: Under Armour.

Brenek said Heavy Hitters is looking to alleviate the cost of the program for some of the kids in New London and Groton. Anyone interested in contributing can email her at shannon@drinkheavyhitters.com.

Meanwhile, there are tryouts for the next round of teams Feb. 18 from noon-2 p.m. at the Wide World of Indoor Sports.

Maybe football will make a comeback around here after all.

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Kentucky’s Elizabethtown Sports Park Announces Partnership with Industry-leading Firm, Sports Facilities Management (SFM) !

CLEARWATER, Fla., Jan. 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Following a nation-wide search for a management firm, Elizabethtown Sports Park has selected Sports Facilities Management (SFM) to lead park operations in 2019 and beyond. Since opening to much anticipation in 2012, Elizabethtown Sports Park has been an important sports asset for tourism in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. The Sports Park quickly became an industry leader in destination marketing as a frequented space for events of all sizes and caliber on weekends while local families have enjoyed access to the park’s many amenities during the week. The park features three quads for baseball and softball totaling 12 fully lighted diamond fields, two championship synthetic turf fields, three large pavilions for events amongst other features. To manage the daily operations, marketing, event booking, maintenance and purchasing of their complex, the Elizabethtown Tourism & Convention Bureau selected the industry-leading Sports Facilities Management.

Elizabethtown Officials and Sports Facilities Management Leaders

Directing the effort for the Elizabethtown Tourism and Convention Bureau, Janna Clark led the project in finding the right management fit for the Sports Park and will oversee the transition from city to SFM’s leadership. “We were very pleased to find Sports Facilities Management, the leader in the industry who comes highly recommended,” Janna remarked. “We are eager to embark on a new journey for sports tourism in our region. This partnership will not only continue the success of the Sports Park, but with Sport Facilities Management’s leadership, together we will take the Park to an exciting new level.”

Jason Clement, Founder and CEO of SFM added, “The Elizabethtown Sports Park is one of the great destinations in the sports tourism industry. Janna and the CVB have done an extraordinary job making E-town a must-visit destination for the very best youth and amateur sports in Kentucky. We are honored to be selected and come alongside in delivering the very best experience for out-of-town visitors as well as E-town residents. We look forward to working closely with the CVB to maximize the investment the community has made in this incredible asset.”

Sports tourism to the area and the associated economic impact is expected to remain strong under the new partnership in 2019 and increase in the years that follow. SFM will also focus on community programming such as adult sports leagues, community events, youth camps and clinics. SFM’s management services will begin in January.

About Sports Facilities Management: Sports Facilities Advisory, LLC (SFA) and Sports Facilities Management, LLC (SFM) are both headquartered in Clearwater, FL. Founded in 2003, SFA has served more than 2,000 communities, produced more than $10 billion in institutional-grade financial forecasts, and provided funding strategies and solutions for more than 120 youth and amateur sports and recreation complexes worldwide. SFM provides industry-leading, results-driven management solutions for sports, fitness, recreation, and event venues nationwide. Since 2014, SFM-managed venues have hosted more than 75 million visitors and generated millions of dollars in economic impact. For more information, visit: www.sportadvisory.com.

About Elizabethtown Sports Park: Elizabethtown, Kentucky is situated at the crossroads of I-65 and the Bluegrass Parkway, making it a convenient place to hold a sporting event. The Sports Park is located near 21 hotels, 6 shopping centers and over 90 restaurants in family-friendly Elizabethtown. The Sports Park can accommodate events and tournaments for baseball, softball, soccer, football, lacrosse, field hockey, and a number of other sports. Two of the largest fields serve as championship fields and have synthetic turf. For more information, visit: https://www.touretown.com/sports/

About Elizabethtown Tourism & Convention Bureau: Elizabethtown is centrally located within 400 miles of 12 major U.S. cities, and less than a 40-minute drive to the Louisville International Airport. Sitting at the intersection of three major highways—Interstate 65, the Bluegrass Parkway, and the Western Kentucky parkway, we have all the vibrant attributes of a much larger city but remain a charming small town. For more information, call 1-800-437-0092 or visit the official website of the at https://www.touretown.com.

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