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Sporting events could boost Springfield's economy

February 15, 2011|by KY3 News

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- The Springfield-Greene County Parks Department said Tuesday that the city will host more than 52 championship competitions this year.  They include youth tournaments like the National Christian Homeschool Association Championships in basketball, soccer and golf, as well as professional and adult sports.

The board also plans to build a Miracle Field at Dan Kinney Park on Blackman Road.  It will be accessible to players who have disabilities.

The board will also break ground on the third phase of the Doling Family Center in north Springfield, which will include a new recreational pool with future plans to build a competitive lap pool.

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Edited news release from Parks Department:

A number of significant sports-related announcements were made on Tuesday for Springfield and Greene County, including the addition of the NCAA Division 1 Missouri Valley Conference softball championship, recognition of area organizations by the Missouri State High School Activities Association, the release of a lineup of more than 50 district, state, regional, national and professional/international sports tournaments and events in 2011 and an update on facility developments by the Springfield-Greene County Parks Department.

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Sports Development and Improvements

The Rotary Club of Springfield North continues its capital campaign to raise funds for a “Miracle Field,” which will be built in Dan Kinney Park, offering an accessible ball field to players who have a variety of disabilities.  That park is on Blackman Road north of Battlefield Road.

Dan Kinney Park Family Center development likely will begin late this summer and will include many of the same amenities as the existing Chesterfield Family Center on West Republic Road.  A master plan for the park includes a planned development of a future aquatics center.

Plans for a 2011 groundbreaking on phase-three development of Doling Family Center in Doling Park on East Talmadge Steet at Campbell Avenue include an indoor recreational aquatics element.  A future addition of a 50-meter competitive pool at the facility is also envisioned.

Missouri State High School Activities Association Awards & Championships

MSHSAA Executive Director Kerwin Urhahn presented Distinguished Service Awards to the Springfield-Greene County Park Board, Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau, Springfield Sports Commission and Director of Parks Jodie Adams.  The MSHSAA Distinguished Service Awards program was established in 1988 to recognize individuals and organizations that have made lifelong contributions to the ideals of interscholastic activities.

“The Park Board, the CVB and Sports Commission, in addition to Jodie herself, have been committed to providing top-notch facilities and amenities when hosting MSHSAA Championship events.  Because of their significant service that goes above and beyond the ordinary, the Association wanted to honor these individuals for their hard work and dedication in making our championship events memorable experiences for all who attend,” said Urhahn.

Urhahn also announced the return of state championships for boys and girls golf, boys and girls tennis, softball and baseball in 2011.

Upcoming Tournaments and Events

The city will have 52 major sporting events, ranging from district to professional-level play.  Some highlights include the following areas:

National Level Highlights

The National Christian Homeschool Association Championships in basketball, soccer and golf return to Springfield. This is the third year the Association will return to Springfield with its championship games, bringing with it hundreds of teams and thousands of participants and guests.

Killian Sports Complex will host the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) Slow Pitch Men’s “E” Recreational Northern National Championship from Sept. 1 – 4. This will be Springfield’s 31st national ASA tournament.

World TeamTennis makes its return to Springfield in July with the Springfield Lasers professional tennis team competing at Mediacom Tennis Stadium at Cooper Tennis Complex. In 2010, the team secured the Western Conference Regular Season Champion title, along with team members honored as WTT Most Valuable Player and Coach of the Year.

Significant Collegiate Tournaments

The Missouri Valley Conference softball championship tournament returns to Springfield after 17 years (Southwest Missouri State University hosted it in 1994).  It'll be at the Killian Softball Stadium at Killian Sports Complex from May 12 – 14.

Evangel University will host the Heart of America Athletic Conference Intercollegiate Tennis Association Regional Team Tournament from April 29 – 30 at Cooper Tennis Complex.

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