Amateur Sports

Valley Forge Sports

Back to School (Recruiting)

 Posted on: January 11 2017
Youngsters who are involved in sports, we hope, are involved for the right reasons: Learning teamwork, staying active, honing social skills. A few are athletically gifted enough that they can look forward to a career at the next level, be it high school, college or beyond. Whether you work with youngsters in camps, in AAU-type organizations or at school, the process of playing with one eye on a scholarship is a stressful one. First, the facts, courtesy the NCAA: Eight million kids are participating in high school sports. Only 480,000 of them (about 6 percent) will eventually compete in collegiate athletics at an NCAA program. And only 56 percent of those athletes will receive “some level” of scholarship assistance, and that amount averages less than $11,000 per student-athlete. And remember, many scholarships are “partial” scholarships, especially when you are dealing with the so-called Olympic sports of track and field, soccer and the like. Even baseball often...

Variety Is the Spice

 Posted on: October 27 2016
At the October NASC Market Segment Meetings, a lot of the talk among attendees was focused on keeping kids involved in sports. As we’ve noted, by the time young athletes hit early high school, participation drops dramatically and with an organization like NASC, kids playing sports is vital to keeping the organization, and the industry, growing.  A recent article on ESPNW takes the youth sports discussion one step further—why you want your young athlete to be involved in multiple sports in this day and age of sport specialization. The author, sports reporter (and sports mom) Michelle Smith, gives five reasons why it’s good for kids to play several sports, including fewer overuse injuries, less chance for emotional burnout, exposure to different kids and different roles and not putting all your sports eggs into one basket.   The final point is perhaps important in the discussion of keeping kids playing sports. “Playing only one sport limits your option...

Schools’ losses could be sports community’s gain

 Posted on: August 15 2016
Olympic fever, albeit short term and every four years, can be a big driver in sports facilities. As we’ve seen Team USA excel in the pool and in gymnastics, expect little boys and girls everywhere (and their parents) to have visions of gold medals dancing in their heads. These expected booms in these sports (and more) can mean an increase in building these facilities—to meet the demands of more people who want to use state-of-the-art equipment and venues. An article in the South Bend Tribune reflects that demand—in the case of two northern Indiana cities, Elkhart and Plymouth, their schools’ facilities are aging (and a YMCA has closed) but those pools could be replaced by larger sports complexes to be used not just for students but for regional meets. If plans go through, northern Indiana would become home to two sports centers that could draw a variety of athletes, from soccer players to swimmers to fitness buffs. Both cities are planning to include a pool that...

Got mud?

 Posted on: August 2 2016
The challenge venue owners often face is what to do with all that space when your primary sport is no longer in season. In particular, a space as big as a racing oval has to find an activity as big as the space to bring in revenue in the off season. That’s why you’ll see, for example, multi-day concerts at race tracks. The growth of extreme sport challenges, like Tough Mudder, Spartan Race and similar obstacle events has given these race tracks and other large venues, something to host on off weekends. And Michigan International Speedway has taken that idea one step further.  The Childrenz Challenge at MIS is in its third year and is in record territory. The muddy obstacle course for 4 to 13 year olds at Michigan International Speedway is looking at a record 2,200 participants on Aug. 13. After having about 1,300 kids last year, the 1,500-kid limit for the Childrenz Challenge already was reached by Feb. 29 this year, Scott Vitale, founder and president, told mlife....

Give it a twirl

 Posted on: July 25 2016
An economic impact second only to college football? That’s a pretty significant impact. And that’s what is going on this week in South Bend. Baton twirlers, yes, that staple of halftime band performances everywhere, are on the University of Notre Dame campus this week from around the country for the 47th annual America’s Youth on Parade baton twirling competition. The South Bend Tribune reports that the National Baton Twirling Association’s competition — often dubbed the Super Bowl of baton twirling — draws contestants from all 50 states and many other countries. Age categories range from tots to the collegiate level in the diverse competition, which will include majorette contests, parade corps, flag corps, drill teams and cheerleading. By the way, the competition’s sessions are free and open to the public. It's estimated that about 5,000 visitors come into the South Bend-Mishawaka area for the competition, and Meghan Huff, sports sales mana...

Upcoming Best Practices and Event Webinars - Register Now

 Posted on: July 13 2016
Check out our line-up of best practices and event webinars below and reserve your spot today!  USA Cycling Thursday, July 21, 2016 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET Presented by Micah Rice Sponsored by MGM Resorts International Register Now! Join Micah Rice from USA Cycling as he discusses what he looks for in a host city and what it takes to host their events. Micah will share details on their upcoming 2018-2019 USA Cycling Amateur Road National Championships, 2018-2019 USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships and the 2019-2020 USA Cycling Cyclo-cross National Championships. There will be time at the end of the presentation for questions. If you are unable to join us on the 21st, remember, you can download the webinar recording from our Webinar Archives (login required).   Create Success with Housing Tuesday, July 26, 2016 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET Presented by Patrick MacCoubrey Register Now! In this webinar learn how event housing can help you improve ...

Cashing in on Olympic Gold

 Posted on: June 27 2016
We are in the middle of Olympic Trials season, where the best the USA has to offer will face off head to head to determine who will represent America at the summer games in Rio. And while the trials could pay off in Olympic gold for the athletes, the host cities are striking their own kind of gold. For example, the USA Swimming Trials under way in Omaha are expected to bring in $35 million-$40 million in economic impact for the seven-day event, up about 20% from the last time they were the host, in 2012. The area’s 30,000 hotel rooms already are booked. Of the event tickets sold for the Trials, it’s estimated that 90% have been sold to guests outside of Nebraska. And remember, the NCAA College World Series is still going on (finals start Monday) so Omaha is bustling with sports tourism guests—and their dollars. And next month USA Gymnastics will hold its Olympic Trials July 8-10 trials at SAP Center in San Jose. San Jose hosted the 2012 trials, the 2007 U.S. champions...

Call it the "Oprah” effect

 Posted on: June 20 2016
With all the time we spend talking about youth sports, it’s interesting to look at some of the more common sporting events that you probably see just about every weekend in your area—the charity 5K or 10K that you’ll run into (or be detoured around) on Saturday mornings. According to 2015 stats from Running USA, the number of recreational athletes completing road races declined for the second straight year in 2015. The reduction was by a more significant margin than in 2014, when finisher totals edged down one percent. For 2015, 17.1 million finishers were reported across all road race distances, a decrease of nine percent from the previous year. Between 1990 and 2013, finisher totals skyrocketed from five million road race runners to more than 19 million. But there is one group that is experiencing its own running boom—women. Women and girls, once an afterthought in the world of running, made up 57% of the 17 million U.S. race finishers last year, again accordi...

It’s NCAA Championship bid time!

 Posted on: June 16 2016
Interested in bidding for an NCAA Division I, II or III regional or final championship? Remember the date of Friday, August 12. From now until the 2021-22 season, NCAA championship sites are up for bid and for just about every sport, the deadline is August 12. Here is a listing of NCAA championships up for bid and upcoming deadlines. The NCAA will walk you through the process at http://championships.ncaa.org. Events are listed in order of when they are scheduled. Included are events for Division I, II and III: 2017-18 Beach Volleyball                             Finals                                   8/11/16 2017-18 Mixed Rifle        &n...

Upcoming Event Webinars – Register Now

 Posted on: June 14 2016
Check out our line-up of event webinars, sponsored by MGM Resorts International, below and reserve your spot today! The Color Run Thursday, June 23, 2016 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET Presented by Kent Phippen Register Now! Join Kent Phippen from The Color Run as he discusses what he looks for in a host city and what it takes to host their events. There will be time at the end of the presentation for questions. If you are unable to join us on the 23rd, remember you can download the webinar recording from our Webinar Archives (login required). USA Cycling Thursday, July 21, 2016 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET Presented by Micah Rice Register Now! Join Micah Rice from USA Cycling as he discusses what he looks for in a host city and what it takes to host their events. Micah will share details on their upcoming 2018-2019 USA Cycling Amateur Road National Championships, 2018-2019 USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships and the 2019-2020 USA Cycling Cyclo-cross National Championship...
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