Earlier this year, The Wenatchee Valley Chamber of Commerce assumed the responsibility of handling destination marketing for the Valley. A key component of that marketing effort involves sports, which is the basis behind the existence of the Wenatchee Valley Sports Council and its partnership with the Chamber.
Some of the higher-end charges of the Sports Council include recruitment and retention of events, assisting local organizers in their bids for tournaments, helping groups attain facility procurement and being an information source for the public, utilizing tools such as press releases, radio reports, weekly newsletters and a regularly updated website.
While sports tourism is big business in the Wenatchee Valley (well over $7 million projected in 2013), its impact goes well beyond the ‘bottom line.’ The charitable benefits of many events and tournaments total in the tens of thousands of dollars here each year. Many service clubs, businesses, tournament organizers and participants generously support numerous causes in need of assistance.
In fact, the Sports Council and one of its key partners, the Wenatchee Valley Sports Foundation, are involved in a couple of charitable activities over the next two weekends. This weekend, the Vintage Airstream Club will be camping at Wenatchee River County Park in Monitor. The public will be allowed to tour these 1950-60s era camp trailers from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday with donations requested. The club, based in Canada, has generously offered to give 100 percent of the donations to the Sports Foundation’s Kid’s Scholarship Fund, helping local kids in need to be able to participate in youth sports programs.
Also, Aug. 17-18, the 38th Annual O’Terry’s Lads & Lasses Softball Tournament will welcome 36 teams to the area. The tourney, directed by the Sports Council, is expected to generate over $6,000 in proceeds to the Sports Foundation’s general fund, which is used to assist facility improvements, youth sports programs and other sports and recreation-related projects.
Oh yes, back to the bottom line. This is the largest co-ed tournament in the state and is expected to generate nearly $160,000 in sports tourism spending. It also exposes dozens of out of area players and their families to the area, often resulting in return trips for future visits and vacations. That’s what you call a true ‘win-win’ situation.
There are dozens of similar stories throughout the year, in which local organizations and clubs rally to assist others in need through tournaments and events. The list is long and impressive. What a great combination: People having fun participating in sports and rec while at the same time helping others.
The Wenatchee Valley Sports Council is a partner of the Wenatchee Valley Chamber of Commerce, assisting with destination marketing. For more Sports Council related information, please contact Matt Kearny at the Chamber offices: 509-662-2116 or email@example.com.