SOURCE: Florida's Sports Coast
Experience Florida’s Sports Coast opens state-of-the-art, 98,000 square-foot facility to welcome sports tourism
PASCO COUNTY, FL (August 27, 2020) - Experience Florida’s Sports Coast (FSC), the Destination Management Organization for Pasco County, is excited to announce the new 98,000 square-foot Wiregrass Ranch Sports Campus of Pasco County (WRSCPC) in Wesley Chapel is officially open, kicking off a new era of sports tourism for the destination.
“With the destination’s recent rebrand to Florida’s Sports Coast, the new Wiregrass Ranch Sports Campus of Pasco County will increase our competitive role in the sports tourism market,” said Tourist Development Council Chairman and Pasco County Commission Chairman Mike Moore. “Families come to compete, but also look for opportunities to be entertained off the field. We look forward to having them dine in our restaurants, shop at our stores and enjoy our local attractions, further contributing to Pasco’s economy.”
Conveniently located between two major international airports and minutes from one of Florida’s major thoroughfares, WRSCPC boasts two 35,500 square-foot multi-purpose courts featuring eight drop-down basketball hoops and 16 volleyball nets; a 5,000 square-foot indoor cheer zone with springboard floor; and two full-size, outdoor multi-purpose fields. WRSCPC not only offers a competitive setting for athletes from across the state, nation and world, it’s also a learning center to help local youth develop their skills and become strong competitors through strategic programming.
RADDSPORTS will manage the facility, and their exceptional team of directors will run local programming for cheer, gymnastics, soccer, basketball and volleyball – the primary sports focus of WRSCPC.
“Not only will the sports campus provide a new level of play for amateur sports competitors, it also expands our meeting venue portfolio, allowing us to offer unparalleled, expansive space to meeting and event planners looking to host tradeshows, conventions and business-related events,” said Tourism Director Adam Thomas.
The quest to build a competitive sports tourism facility that could host 700+ event attendees started nearly 20 years ago when the Pasco County Board of County Commissioners had the foresight to realize the value and potential economic impact of sports tourism.
“The board knew then what the lifeblood of tourism was for the county,” said Thomas.
From there, the county embarked on building the $29 million sports campus with Pasco’s tourist development tax, set on land generously donated by the Porter family. The Porters, one of area’s leading cattle ranchers, established Wiregrass Ranch in 1942.
“This venue is unlike anything else in the Tampa Bay sports market,” said Sports Development and Tourism Manager Consuelo Sanchez. “It’s solely dedicated to sports and includes everything event organizers and planners look for, all under one roof. Having an on-site hotel really adds to the convenience WRSCPC offers to event planners who are considering different venues. That, and having a diverse selection of additional hotels throughout the destination make booking a sporting event at the sports campus a no-brainer.”
Sanchez has been promoting the sports campus to youth amateur sporting event planners and organizers across the country, building a robust events calendar for 2021, 2022 and beyond to support sports tourism efforts. Forty-three out of 52 weekends from August 2020 to August 2021 are booked with youth amateur sporting events due to the efforts of RADDSPORTS and Sanchez.
Full List of Available WRSCPC Amenities Includes:
• 16 Volleyball Courts
• 8 Basketball Courts
• Competition Cheer Studio
• 16 Pickleball Courts
• 8 Futsal Courts
• 2 Cheer Competition Areas
• Athletic Training Center
• VIP Mezzanine
• Meeting Area
• Educational Lab
• Lounge Area
• Concessions Area
• Full-Service Kitchen
• On-site hotel, Residence Inn by Marriott
About Florida’s Sports Coast
Paying homage to its sports roots, the destination’s tagline, "Let’s Play!” celebrates the active traveler, adventurous family, avid angler and lively local in an approachable and spirited way. The destination has redefined the recreational retreat and serves up endless fun for adventure seekers. With 35 area parks, vibrant nature trails, thrilling zip line courses, hot air balloon outings, nearby islands with four artificial reefs, year-round recreational fishing, paddleboard and kayak trails, the options for exploration are unlimited.