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Chicago Daily Herald
The Aurora Area Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Aurora Area Sports Alliance this summer will play host to two national softball tournaments for the United States Specialty Sports Association.
The USSSA National Championship Great Lakes Fast-Pitch Girls Softball 14U "open" and 18U class "B" team tournaments will be July 18 to 22 at Stuart Sports Complex, Griffin Drive and Route 30, Montgomery.
Awarding the tournaments to the Aurora area is the result of months of planning between the bureau and the Fox Valley Park District, which collaborated to create a memorable experience for the girls, both on and off the fields.
"When I came into Aurora's pitch meeting to host these tournaments, I didn't know what to expect. I have to say I was blown away by what they proposed," said Ed White, assistant state director of USSSA Illinois.
"The Aurora area was chosen over three other Chicagoland suburbs to host these tournaments. Stuart Sports Complex is a welcome change of scenery for us, and the Aurora area provides many family-friendly sites and attractions that players and their families can enjoy when the kids aren't playing," said Perry Clark, state director of USSSA Illinois.
"We look forward to a successful, lasting partnership with the Aurora area and the Fox Valley Park District."
"The Aurora area is thrilled to host these USSSA events. This is precisely why we formed the Aurora Area Sports Alliance, so we can attract more tournaments and travelers to the region," said Cort Carlson, executive director of the Aurora Area Convention and Visitors Bureau.
"The economic impact of sports tourism is huge, and we have just started to scratch the surface. We're honored that USSSA has chosen the Aurora area and Stuart Sports Complex as a home for tournament play."
USSSA anticipates more than 2,000 attendees at the tournaments, with an anticipated economic impact of $1.8 million spent locally.
The tournament will use a five-game guarantee format, and teams then will be seeded into pools based on current USSSA rankings. For information, visit usssa.com.
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