National Championships Galore Coming to Utah



Utah just played host to the USA Team Handball and USA Rugby National Championships, and even more are coming down the pike. It's so great to see the diversity of sports activities here in Utah, and that more organizations are recognizing the convenience, and fan support they can get.

Here's two releases about upcoming events from USA Volleyball & USA Hockey

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USA Volleyball has selected Salt Lake City as the location for its 2012 USA Volleyball Open National Championships to be held May 26 to June 2. The Intermountain Region of USA Volleyball, the Utah Sports Commission and the Salt Lake City Convention & Visitors Bureau will serve as the tournament hosts.

The 83rd Annual USA Volleyball Open National Championships will take place at Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center. The USA Volleyball Annual Meetings will also take place in Salt Lake City the week leading up to the USA Volleyball Open National Championships.

“We are excited to host USA Volleyball, a key partner of ours as we continue to diversify into both winter and summer Olympic Legacy relationships,” said Jeff Robbins, president and CEO of the Utah Sports Commission. “This will be the fifth USA Volleyball national championship the State of Utah has hosted since 2001 and the 2012 Open National Championships will bring significant exposure and economic impact to Utah.”

“The Intermountain Volleyball Association (IVA) is so excited to once again be chosen to host a volleyball event of this stature and magnitude,” said Kim Free, COO of Intermountain Volleyball Association. “We have a long history of great volleyball in our region and this announcement is proof-positive of the great support we have in our business and community partnerships.”

Salt Lake City and its surrounding suburbs have previously hosted other USA Volleyball events. The USA Volleyball Open National Championships were held in Salt Lake City in 1972 and 1988. Salt Lake City hosted the USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships in 2001, 2002 and 2005. The USA Volleyball Boys’ Junior National Championships was held in nearby Sandy, Utah, in 2008. Salt Lake City was also the host city for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s first two matches of the 2006 FIVB World League.

“We are very pleased to bring the USA Volleyball Open National Championships to Salt Lake City in 2012,” USA Volleyball Senior Director Tom Pingel said. “USA Volleyball has a very strong history of conducting successful events in the past in Salt Lake City and I’m sure the same will be true with this event. We look forward to working with the civic leaders of Salt Lake City, as well as the Intermountain Region in making the 2012 USA Volleyball Open National Championships another fabulous event.”

With an estimated 550-plus teams and 6,000-plus players arriving into the Salt Lake City area, the USA Volleyball Open National Championships are projected to occupy more than 12,000 room nights at area hotels. The event will have a reported $16-18 million economic impact on the city.

USA Volleyball, founded in 1928, will showcase its USA Volleyball Open National Championships for the 82nd year from May 28 to June 4, 2011, at the Dallas Convention Center. Except for 1943 and 1944 during the height of World War II, the Open has been a mainstay celebrating adult volleyball nationally. The event is one of the largest national championships in any sport in the United States, and the Open has featured the sport of volleyball from coast-to-coast.

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Utah has been awarded the 2012 USA Hockey High School National Championship Tournament. The March 21-25, 2012 event, will take place just one month after the 10th anniversary of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City and is the highest profile hockey tournament in Utah since the Olympics. Athletes from around the country will have the opportunity to compete in the same venues that hosted Olympians vying for the gold ten years prior.

The top high school hockey teams from around the country will travel to Utah to compete for the national championship. The tournament has been held in Chicago the past two years. “This is a great opportunity for Utah hockey fans to see the finest high school hockey players in the country during the five-day tournament,” said Utah High School Hockey president Pete Bratsos. “We will be working closely with the Utah Sports Commission, the Utah Grizzlies Professional Hockey Club and the local chambers of commerce and visitors bureaus to make sure that all of the players, coaches and their fans from as far away as Florida and New York enjoy the same great experience as our guests had during the 2002 Olympics.”

The Utah Sports Commission is excited to partner with USA Hockey, Utah High School Hockey and our venue partners to host approximately 1,100 players, coaches, referees, tournament officials and fans," said Jeff Robbins, president and CEO of the Utah Sports Commission. "This event brings economic benefit to Utah and adds to Utah's diverse sports portfolio".