Gulf Shores, AL, June 24, 2009 --(PR.com
)-- Six months into 2009, the Alabama Gulf Coast Sports Commission has already surpassed its 2008 record of athletic room nights on Pleasure Island. With 10,141 sports-related room nights (year-to-date), the sports industry is on pace to shatter the 2008 record of 10,081 room nights.
“Our success is directly related to the productive working relationship that we have with the Cities of Orange Beach and Gulf Shores,” said Beth Gendler, director of sales for the Alabama Gulf Coast Sports Commission. “This team approach has enabled us to accommodate almost any event, often times taking advantage of our numerous state-of-the-art facilities to schedule multiple events during one weekend.”
Gendler added that the Sports Commission staff has worked diligently to attract new events to the Pleasure Island community. Thanks to a recently developed partnership with the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), the area has the opportunity to host 6 baseball events for this organization, two of which are prominent World Series tournaments.
Of the 28 USSSA Global World Series events being hosted throughout the nation, the Orange Beach and Gulf Shores area will welcome two of these tournaments in July.
“As the only beach destination on the World Series schedule, we are excited to welcome thousands of young boys who will compete in two weekends of thrilling baseball action,” Gendler said. “It is an honor to be listed alongside other destinations like Kansas City, Mo., Des Moines, Iowa, and Denver, Colo., – who are all hosting similar tournaments this summer.”
On July 8th, nearly 100 teams with 10, 12 and 14-year old boys are expected to arrive for the first tournament. Traveling with family members and friends, this group is expected to reach about 5,000 people. Then, about 80 to 90 teams in the 9, 11 and 13-year old age brackets will arrive on July 15th, bringing the grand total to about 4,5oo people for that weekend. Tournament organizers expect that these two tournaments will attract a grand total of nearly 10,000 players, families and supporters to Pleasure Island.
Following the same format for both events, the Gulf Shores Sportsplex and the Orange Beach Sportsplex will split tournament play between the two facilities. Games will be held Thursday through Sunday (July 9-12 and July 16-19) from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. each day. Adult admission (18 and older) is $8.00 per day or $25.00 for a tournament pass. Daily admission for seniors and children ages 6 through 17 is $5.00 while a tournament pass is $20.00 for these age groups. Children age 5 and under will be admitted free of charge.
Opening ceremonies for the 10, 12 and 14-year old boys’ tournament will be held Wednesday, July 8th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Orange Beach Sportsplex. A week later, the 9, 11 and 13-year old boys take to the field for opening ceremonies on Wednesday, July 15th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Gulf Shores Sportsplex. Admission for these two ceremonies is free.
For more information on USSSA, visit www.usssabaseball.org/global_sports. To learn more about the upcoming athletic events on Alabama’s beaches, visit www.alabamabeachsports.com.