If ever anyone needs evidence of a boom in youth sports, LakePoint Sporting Community and Town Center should be their first stop. Located less than 40 miles northwest of Atlanta in Emerson, Georgia, LakePoint developers could argue it’s the most ambitious youth sports complex in the country.
The complex opened for tournament play in June, and while still undergoing several different construction projects, it has already booked 50,000 hotel rooms for this summer. More than 1,700 teams will descend upon Bartow County, Georgia, bringing more than 1.5 million people to the complex this summer alone, according to developers.
Future plans call for up to 24 hotels on-site as well as a movie theater, a Bass Pro Shop and dozens of restaurants. The $1 billion project was developed by investors who traveled to sports events as parents, so getting to the fields, finding a place for the team dinner and having on-site activities for siblings and parents were considered at its inception. But that’s not what makes LakePoint so impressive.
The scope and breadth of LakePoint’s field capabilities is downright absurd, and the state-of-the-art amenities are some of the most impressive rights holders will find anywhere.
LakePoint has 14 soccer/lacrosse fields, 13 of which use synthetic turf and feature HydroChill technology to keep the fields up to 50 degrees lower than the outside temperature. A championship field with a natural grass pitch is also available and can seat up to 12,000.
The complex features 16 Major League-size baseball fields with synthetic turf provided by Shaw Sports Turf. The fields also include Musco Lighting and digital scoreboards. There will be two showcase fields, one of which can seat up to 7,500.
An additional 12 baseball/softball fields for children 7-13 as well as a 14,000-sq.-ft. indoor facility allowing teams to warm up and hold training sessions are also on-site. The complex includes 12 batting cages and pitching tunnels.
LakePoint’s indoor facility can run 12 basketball games or 24 volleyball matches simultaneously. The facility can convert into a championship competition space capable of seating around 5,000.
Developers are adding an IAAF Class-1 Certified Track and Field complex, making it one of only five in the U.S. with that distinction, and one of 103 worldwide. The certification will enable LakePoint to host any track and field competition as far up as the World Championships and Olympic Trials.
If that wasn’t enough, there’s more, including a Miracle League Field, designed specifically with special needs children in mind. The field features a cushioned, rubberized surface to cut down on injuries. Every dugout is wheelchair-accessible, and there are no raised barriers—field bases are flat, for example—ensuring wheelchair-bound or visually impaired athletes can play without worry.
LakePoint is in the process of building a Greg Norman Champions Golf Academy, which will feature a 9-hole, par-3 course as well as state-of-the-art training facilities. Training bays equipped with V1 video equipment and the latest swing analysis technology; extensive on-site custom club fitting technology; a Cybex-equipped gym; practice greens, bunkers and practice tees; classrooms for on-site and online education programs; as well as a clubhouse and branded restaurant.
The complex is actively booking business, and rights holders should plan on working with Experient on booking rooms as LakePoint has partnered with the third-party housing company.
14 soccer fields | 16 Major League-size baseball fields | 12 youth baseball fields | Indoor space for 12 basketball courts | Miracle League Field on-site