Where Champions are Made
5 Reasons Abilene is Ideal for Sports Events
State-of-the-art facilities, courts of all kinds and an ideal location. Abilene isn’t just a city for sports; it’s where champions are made. Whether you’re planning a gymnastics meet, tennis tournament or a powerlifting competition, Abilene has everything you need for a successful event. It’s not just about venues, hotels and ease of access.
Friendly volunteers make your competitors feel like pros, and the community gets behind events with the kind of major-league enthusiasm you won’t find anywhere else. Read on to find out why Abilene is such a great place to host your next competition or tournament and start planning your next event here.
Abilene is Easy to Reach
If you’re trying to attract as many athletes and teams to your event from North Texas and the Panhandle area, Abilene’s location can’t be beat. The Key City sits along Interstate 20 within a three-hour drive of the Dallas-Ft. Worth Area, Lubbock and Midland-Odessa, and four hours from Austin. For competitors farther away, the Abilene Regional Airport also has daily direct flights to and from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Once your competitors arrive, they’ll find Abilene is just as easy to get around as it is to travel to. It takes just minutes to travel from one side of town to another, so it never takes long to get from our venues to our hotels and restaurants.
The New Dodge Jones Youth Sports Center is State of the Art
Four regulation-sized basketball courts, eight volleyball courts and ample indoor space for gymnastics, cheerleading and martial arts competitions. These are just some of the amenities you’ll find at the 55,500-square-foot Dodge Jones Youth Sports Center, which is due to open in early 2020. Along with all the space, Abilene’s newest sports center will have elevated seating for spectators, a pro shop and meeting spaces with top-of-the-line audio-visual systems. The Dodge Jones Youth Sports Center is already accepting bookings, so inquire now to schedule your event here.
From baseball and softball to tennis and track and field, Abilene is full of venues that can accommodate just about anything. Popular for regional and national events, the Lake Kirby Softball and Baseball Complex has two little league and two senior league baseball fields and four softball fields, all with lights and seating for 150 spectators. The Nelson Park Complex adds a further five lighted baseball fields that can accommodate 800 spectators, making it a great option for larger competitions.
For equestrian events, powerlifting, gymnastics, pole vaulting, wrestling and a long list of other sports, consider the Taylor County Expo Center. Currently undergoing a $55 million renovation with an expected completion date in fall 2020, the center hosts more than 200 events throughout the year (including the West Texas Fair & Rodeo).
Hosting a track and field event? The facilities at Abilene Christian University, McMurry University and Hardin-Simmons University have hosted the likes of the AAU Track and Field junior Olympic regional qualifier, American Southwest Conference Track and Field Championships and other high-profile competitions. Abilene is a hotspot for tennis as well, with the courts at the Rose Park Tennis Center and the three universities hosting United States Tennis Association youth and adult tournaments and big-time events like the Texas Slam, which brings 1,000 of the best junior players to the city every year.
See a list of all of Abilene’s sports facilities that will be a perfect fit for your competition here.
We’ll Help You Up Your Game
Before your competitors arrive to give it their all on the field, you may need an assist of your own planning and executing your event. That’s where the team at the Abilene Convention & Visitors Bureau comes in. Coordinating facility inspection tours and assisting with hotel rates and discounts at restaurants are among the many ways we can give you an assist. We’ll even help you get the word out through local media channels, and our volunteers will have your athletes feeling like stars. There are even grants that you may qualify for.
- Facility Inspection Tours
- Restaurant Discounts for Teams
- Assistance with Hotel Rates
- Special Event Planning
- Name Badges
- Registration Assistance
- Welcome Packets
- Welcome Speakers
- Public Relations/Media
- VIP Gifts
There’s Plenty to Do Outside of Competition
Although your athletes and teams are traveling for their competitions, that doesn’t mean they need to be confined to their hotel rooms. The Abilene Zoo is a great place to stretch your legs a couple hours while ogling the legs of 250 or so different species. PrimeTime Family Entertainment Center is home to everything from bowling lanes and two 18-hole miniature golf courses to a go-kart track, laser tag arena and an arcade. Meanwhile, the Maxx Air Trampoline Park offers 30,000 square feet of bouncy entertainment, including wall-to-wall trampolines, battle beams and a challenging ninja course. To learn a thing or two about the tall tales of the Texas frontier, Frontier Texas! delivers through its interactive exhibits and larger-than-life characters.
Abilene’s easy-to-reach location and abundance of first-rate facilities makes it the ideal choice for all kinds of competitions. Plan your next event here. Ready to get started? Check out our brochure and submit your request for proposal.
Contact Debi Schultz, Director of Sales to see how we can help.