The events industry as a whole is facing unprecedented challenges as the world combats the coronavirus pandemic. Countless meetings, conferences and trade shows have been cancelled or postponed. The sports event industry has likewise been hit hard. With stadiums and arenas that once held major sports events currently shuttered, event organizers may need to navigate new possibilities as programs begin to come back online.
But even before the COVID-19 challenges began, savvy event organizers and destinations were partnering on new, innovative and creative ways to stage sports competitions — and it's this kind of ingenuity that will pay dividends under the "new normal," which will likely require more inventive appraoches than ever before.
While traditional stadiums and arenas will serve their purposes for future events, many competitions could potentially be held in unique locations. Consider out-of-the-box venues such as beaches, parking garages, warehouses, stadium concourses or even airport hangars, under the right circumstances. The possibilities are endless.
SportsTravel, in partnership with the Atlantic City Sports Commission, recently published an exclusive guide to finding and booking unique sports events venues. The guide offers expert insight into:
Rethinking Convention Spaces
Many convention centers are investing in features such as accessible flooring that can be easily transformed, with an eye towards easing logistical challenges for sports event organizers. You can read about the specific efforts of destinations such as the Atlantic City Convention Center in SportsTravel's guide.
Taking Advantage of Offseason at the Stadium
You don't always have to stick to your event's expected setting. For example, U.S. Ski & Snowboard has hosted past events in Major League Baseball stadiums. The Summer X Games has seen success in National Football League stadiums. And at the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, even the concourses themselves have served as suitable venues within a venue. Use this guide to get inspired and learn how you can transform venues to cater to your audience.
Making the Most of Location
Photogenic spots and scenic locales can make for some of the most memorable venues. Take note of events such as the North American Sand Soccer Championships in Virginia Beach, Va., and the Jersey Jumps Beach Vault — a pole-vaulting competition — to appreciate what a stunning natural backdrop can do for a competition.
Placing New Sports in Historic Venues
In Toronto, the former home of the National Hockey League's Maple Leafs is now hosting esports competitions. So is the historic Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Repurposing historic locations can add value to the event and help to reinvigorate the venue. Find more inspiration in SportsTravel's guide.
Take your sporting event to unexpected locations. Think bowling in a NASCAR speedway, serving up beach volleyball near a palace or elevating karate competitions to the top of a skyscraper. The possibilities are endless.
Download the SportsTravel's exclusive guide to finding creative sports event venues to learn how the Skate International Distance & Supercross Association transformed a parking structure into a unique venue. Sometimes it just takes another look around a destination to discover the hidden treasures.
Download your guide now.