Q&A: What is a sports commission and why is Rapid City considering one?
Here’s what you need to know:
What is a sports commission?
A sports commission is a group of people with the goal of promoting sports tourism while also allocating funding to improve and/or create sports facilities.
Who is working on it?
Visit Rapid City is working with the Huddle Up consulting group. Huddle Up describes itself as an group that helps organizations collaborate effectively to expand sports tourism.
Why does Rapid City need a sports commission?
Rapid City has a large youth population involved in sports. Improved facilities could mean that Rapid City would have a better chance to host larger youth sporting events. This would generate more money for the city and the surrounding areas by driving up tourism in the off season. Brook Kaufman, CEO of Visit Rapid City said, “Two primary things. One is giving our kids who live here better facilities to play. In and to helping drive the tourism economy, which we know creates jobs, taxes, earnings opportunities.”
What would it mean for Rapid City?
The details are still up in the air right now, but in general it would mean youth sporting facilities would be improved, giving kids a better place to play their favorite sport(s).
“It’s certainly the quality of life and the assets and people not having to travel. But then I also think it’s going to do what tourism always does, which is create jobs and stability in an economy. So is that vertical or that segment is very stable. And sports is another way to do that,” Kaufman said.
When might a sports commission be formed?
This is still in the very early stages of development, but Visit Rapid City will be contributing several hundred thousand dollars to get it up and running for the first few years.
How can I get involved?
If you want to find out how you can get involved with the sports commission, contact the office of Visit Rapid City