5 Venues to Watch for in 2016

5 Venues to Watch for in 2016

By Matt Swenson, January 14, 2016

A new year means new venues and facilities for planners to have a ball with. We’ve put together a sampling of what 2016 will bring. Be sure to check out our annual Sports Facilities Guide, coming out in March, for a complete listing of where to plan events this year.

The Ripken Experience — Pigeon Forge

What does $22.5 million and the backing of baseball’s “Iron Man” bring you? One of the finest facilities you’ll ever see—worth an estimated $40 million annually in sports tourism dollars in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, on the footsteps of the Great Smoky Mountains. Featuring six fields modeled after professional ballparks—including Oriole Park at Camden Yards, where Cal Ripken starred in Baltimore—The Ripken Experience also has elite training equipment and batting cages, as well as a two-level, 14,000-sq.-ft. clubhouse overlooking the playing grounds. First pitch is slated for March 9.

Emily Jaenson, the only woman general manager in Triple-A Baseball, discusses how she has continued to succeed in a tradtionally male-dominated role.

Loudoun Sports Tourism recently launched as a sports-specific brand targeting events to bring to the Northern Virginia county.

Patrick Coogan, president and CEO of SportsBR, shares stories of his baseball career and his vision for sports in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Carey Harverycutter and John Shaner share the secret formula that has worked so well for Salem, Virginia, in sports tourism.