|Monday, July 25, 2005
Fresno, FPU to host 2006 & 2007 NAIA National Outdoor Track & Field Championships
The Cockerham Track on the campus of Fresno Pacific University will be the site of the 2006 and 2007 NAIA National Outdoor Track and Field Championship the next two years.
The announcement was made today by Roger Montero, Deputy Mayor, City of Fresno, and Ruth Feldblum, NAIA Championships Event Administrator at a news conference today at Selland Arena.
The Fresno Sports Council, Fresno Pacific University & City of Fresno teamed up to land NAIA's largest championship competition.
FPU and the NAIA have reached a two-year agreement to host the championships the next two years. The three-day event will be held May 25-27, 2006 & May 24-26, 2007.
"The NAIA looked at several sites for this championship, including Indianapolis and the current home, Louisville. Fresno stood out as the city with the “total package.” It was clear as we went through the bid process that Fresno has all the right people on its team to create a phenomenal experience for athletes, fans and this community" said Feldblum.
"We are expanding," said Fresno Pacific athletics director Dennis Janzen, who is also a member of the Fresno Sports Council board of directors, of the FPU athletic department. "I think this just makes sense. It fits in well with the direction our program is going. It is a huge challenge, but we are delighted for the opportunity."
The NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships, which consist of 52 separate events, has the largest participation of any NAIA national competition. Over 1,000 athletes from 100 teams nation wide are expected to participate in Fresno each year, bringing more than $500,000 of revenue to the City from hotels and meals. With other expenses, such as transportation, entertainment, and shopping, the total economic impact is expected to reach one million dollars.
As a leader in the development of student-athletes, the NAIA is committed to changing the culture of sport through Champions of Character. Founded in 1937, the NAIA continues to be a pioneer in implementing exceptional standards for academics, diversity and character. Today, the NAIA sponsors 23 collegiate championships in 13 sports for its nearly 300 member institutions throughout the United States and Canada.
The Fresno Sports Council (FSC) is a non-profit organization that is managed by SMG on behalf of the City of Fresno. FSC has assembled an impressive board of directors consisting of 7 appointed members from City institutions as well as private citizens. Members of the board are: Roger Montero, Deputy Mayor, City of Fresno; Andy Souza, City of Fresno; Ben Ewell, Fresno Convention & Visitors Bureau; William C. Overfelt, Fresno Convention & Entertainment Center; Dennis Janzen, Fresno Pacific University; Jennifer Alcorn, professional boxer; and Dr. Jim Drake, cardiologist.
Fresno Pacific University offers undergraduate and graduate programs that stress solid academic preparation and a strong ethical foundation. Each year more than 2,000 traditional and adult students attend classes on the 42-acre main campus in southeast Fresno or centers in Visalia and Bakersfield. The university also reaches 12,000 students across the nation and around the world through professional development studies programs. The only four-year Christian university in the Central Valley, FPU is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and ranked in the top quarter among Western universities master’s category by U.S. News & World Report.