February 09, 2010

News Release

For Immediate Release

Parks Announces Significant Sports News for 2010

A number of significant sports-related announcements were made today for Springfield and Greene County, including the addition of the first Paralympic Sport Club for the area, the addition of a Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) Championship and the release of a list of 36 district, state, regional, national and professional/international sports tournaments and events for 2010.

Paralympic Sport Springfield, a program of Springfield-Greene County Park Board, will make its debut with the sport of archery. Under the International Paralympic Committee, Paralympic Sport Springfield will offer a new community-based sport development program focused on increasing availability of programming for individuals of all ages with disabilities. Kansas City, Mo. and St. Charles, Mo. are the only other two cities in the state to have similar programs. Visit www.paralympic.org for more information.

USA Archery is the newest governing body to work with the Park Board for the advancement of the sport of archery for those able bodied athletes. In cooperation with local Crossroads Archery Club, Ritter Springs Park will become the primary location for the sport.

Significant Collegiate and Professional Tournaments new to Springfield in 2010 include the NCAA Division II Women’s Super Region I Golf Championship on May 2 – 4 and the USTA Missouri Valley Section US Open National Playoffs on May 15 – 19. The winner of the US Open Playoffs event will receive a wildcard into the US Open Qualifying Tournament.

Missouri State High School Activities Association announced the addition of the Softball State Championships to Springfield, to be held Oct. 18 & 19, 2010. Springfield is currently home to the MSHSAA Girls and Boys Tennis, Girls and Boys Golf, and Baseball Championships.

Sports Development and Improvements happening this year include the addition of synthetic turf to the Cooper Soccer Stadium Field, thanks to a generous donation by the Cooper and Rick McQueary Families. Also, 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.

Upcoming Tournaments and Events for 2010 included a list of 36, ranging from district to professional-level play. A full list is attached, entitled “2010 Community-Wide Sports Championship Event List.”

2010 Winter Olympic local celebration activities include Mediacom Ice Park, 635 E. Trafficway, as Springfield’s Olympic headquarters. A number of free activities, including hockey and figure skating clinics on Feb. 13, 26 and 27, and opening ceremony and event coverage on rink televisions highlight the two-week games.

The Park Board will work with district, state, regional and national level organizations and governing bodies to host the events, including the Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Greater Springfield Sports Commission.

“The activities coming into Springfield and Greene County have tremendous economic and quality of life impacts to the community,” said Director of Parks Jodie Adams. “Springfield-Greene County is a Sports Illustrated ‘Sports Town USA’ city and the facilities showcased during these 2010 competitions will speak for themselves.”

This many activities require community support as well. “We also want to give a big thank you to the sponsors, partners and volunteers who stand by our athletes throughout the year,” said Adams. “Large or small, the Park Board relies on filling funding gaps with private donations, sponsorships and volunteer staff. These individuals and organizations play a big role in the success of our bottom line and without their support we wouldn’t be able to bite off such an aggressive season of events year after year.”

For more information, contact: Bob Nelson, Public Information Administrator, 417-874-2176.