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CVB Works With Numerous Local Entities to Create Athletic Facilities Venue Web Site
Hagerstown, MD —The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau has created a new interactive sports venue and facilities guide. The online data base can be searched, and is set up to assist sports teams and tournaments in their search for sites.
According to CVB Sales Director Betsy De Vore, “The CVB works to attract tournaments and athletic organizations. We interact all the time with teams and individuals who are looking for places to field their activities and events. Whether it is softball, cycling, basketball, soccer or equestrian events, there are facilities in Washington County which are now listed on one web site.” De Vore said that the CVB worked with Washington County’s Department of Parks and Facilities, the City of Hagerstown, Hagerstown Community College, the Washington County Public Schools, local national and state parks, several private facilities, the state’s Office of Sports Marketing, DH Web, Inc. on web design, and also with Washington County Commissioner Ruth Anne Callaham.
According to CVB President Tom Riford, “The committee was formed by the CVB, and we surveyed every entity that we all could think of, fine-tuning the information about the facilities, and creating the data-base. DH Web set it up in an interactive web site, so that sports directors can search for the exact facility which they are looking for, and maps of where everything is.” Riford said the project took several months, and is continually being improved.
Washington County’s Director of Parks and Facilities Jim Sterling said, “This new product, put together and funded by the CVB, allows people to go online and quickly find venues where a wide range of sporting events can take place in Washington County and even other nearby locations. We are approached, as is the City of Hagerstown, the CVB, the Washington County Public Schools, and other entities all individually, by people looking for venues. This is the first time something like this has ever been put together in one place, and it is searchable by type of sport.”
County Commissioner Ruth Anne Callaham said, “Hats off to the CVB and the committee for putting this all together. We met for several months, and this is a great marketing tool for Washington County. Local hotels are utilized all the time by visiting tournaments, and this will help create an even more positive local economic impact through sports tourism.”
The City of Hagerstown’s Recreation Services Coordinator Andrew Hoffman said, “The features and amenities available at all the City’s and County’s venues are provided. We also decided to include things like the actual length of fields, what concessions and other amenities are available, and more.”
The Washington County Board of Education’s Supervisor of Athletics, Health and Physical Education Eric Michael said, “One of the best features, whether it is a county, city, school, or private facility, is that the new online guide has maps which allow users to best plan not only location, but distances between venues, or distances between facilities and hotels.” The Map-It feature allows users to see the location of venue from an aerial vantage point and by street view.
The CVB’s Tom Riford said, “Sporting event planners can now have access to a large of amount of information at their fingertips, such as finding venues for a softball tournament, and where the fields are located. We welcome sporting teams and tournaments to Washington County. Often the pre-planned athletic events fill up our hotels, even during relatively slower times in our tourism climate and schedule. For instance, the Greenbrier Mountain Bike Challenge and the JFK 50-Mile fill up hotels, during what would be normally slow tourism times in our county. We’d love twenty more of these kinds of annual events.”
The guide can be seen on the CVB’s web site (there’s a button link right from the front page), or directly at http://www.marylandmemories.org/sports-venues.shtml. Also, the CVB is planning on producing a printed guide of sports venues, to take to trade shows, and to send to sporting event planners.
The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit organization whose mission is to help attract visitors to Hagerstown and Washington County. The CVB helps to create growth for the local economy by promoting, developing and expanding the local visitor industry. For more information, see: http://www.marylandmemories.org.
For more information about Hagerstown and Washington County and upcoming Civil War Sesquicentennial events visit http://www.marylandmemories.org. Washington County is part of the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area (http://www.heartofthecivilwar.org), and the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Heritage Area (http://hallowedground.org).