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The Group Travel Leader Going on Faith Select Traveler

Sports facilities: Fields of dreams

Courtesy Round Rock CVB

The West
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — In the last two years, three new sports facilities have upped San Mateo County’s game.

In November 2011, the Foundry opened with a volleyball clinic led by Olympic Gold Medal winner Kerri Walsh and her husband, Casey Jennings, a pro beach volleyball player
The Foundry’s playing surface is cushioned with millions of rubber pellets, which decrease injuries and makes play more comfortable.

Six volleyball courts can also be used for basketball, futsal, tennis and pickle ball tournaments.
In Burlingame, the indoor sports center Burlingamer opened in early 2011. Its soccer court can convert to two futsal courts or two indoor softball or baseball training fields.

It can also be used for indoor soccer, field hockey and lacrosse. Burlingamer played host to U.S. Futsal’s six-day 2012 Pacific Futsal Cup, which drew teams from the United States, Mexico and Australia.

Also in the region, Sports House opened in November in Redwood City. It describes itself as the “Disneyland of Indoor Sports,” with two TurfGrass Premier synthetic turf fields. The multi-sport facility also has a basketball court and three volleyball courts with the same type of flooring used by several NBA teams and during the 2012 Olympics. This spring SportsHouse’s beach volleyball court will open.

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SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Santa Clara is expected to be a major player in national and worldwide sports competitions beginning as early as 2014. The city’s new 68,500-seat Santa Clara Stadium will be the home to the National Football League’s San Francisco 49ers.

The stadium’s C-shape allows fans to use the plaza level to roam and get food from concession stands without missing the action on the field.

In addition to professional football, Santa Clara also expects to host NCAA college football championship and bowl games and international soccer, among other competitions.

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ROUND ROCK, Texas — Round Rock, a city of nearly 100,000 on the edge of Austin, has built a reputation for outdoor sporting events, especially baseball, softball and soccer.

With the opening in December 2013 of the $14.5 million Round Rock Sports Center, the city will expand its realm.

The 81,500-square-foot center will have six basketball or 12 volleyball courts and nine multi-purpose rooms with seating for up to 1,700 fans.

The indoor facility will host a range of sports including badminton, basketball, darts, gymnastics, tumbling, cheerleading, baton twirling, jump roping, horseshoe pitching, dodge ball, rock climbing, fencing, powerlifting, weightlifting, wrestling, martial arts, archery, bocce, table tennis and volleyball.

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LYNNWOOD, Wash. — A lighted turf field that makes it possible to play ball year round, even during inclement weather, is expected to bring more baseball and soccer competitions to Snohomish County.

Triton Field at Edmonds Community College opened last fall. The field is part of a $2.5 million sports complex that includes an indoor practice hitting facility and two indoor bullpens.
Triple Crown Sports Baseball will likely use the facility as one of the fields for its  annual Memorial Baseball National Qualifier.

In Monroe, about 35 miles northeast of Seattle, a motocross track that opened last March is the first and only one of its kind in the area. The tracks at Evergreen Speedway are a hybrid Motocross/Supercross track for Pro AM rides and a full kids racetrack with its own starting gate.

Already, the Evergreen Motocross Park has brought new competitions to the county. Three Pro Events were held last summer, each attracting some 400 riders from Eastern Washington, Oregon and Canada.

The South
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — The hydraulic track with a Mondotrack surface at the new Birmingham CrossPlex is one of only six in the United States and eight worldwide.

In 10 minutes, officials can raise or lower the banked corners of the six-lane oval. It also has dual horizontal runways for pole vault, long jump and triple jump and eight-60 meter lanes for sprint/hurdle events.

The track is just the start at this 750,000-square-foot, multipurpose facility a few minutes from downtown Birmingham. The CrossPlex also has a 50-meter indoor Olympic-size pool, with ten 50-meter lanes, ten 25 meter lanes and 20 25-meter lanes.

There is room for up to nine indoor volleyball courts and the floor can  also be used for wrestling, cheering and gymnastics competitions. The indoor track/volleyball facility will seat up to 4,000 spectators. The natatorium seats up to 1,300.

In addition, the facility has 5,000 square feet of meeting space outfitted with audiovisual equipment and wireless Internet access.

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LAKE CHARLES, La. —  Seven soccer fields that opened in January at the Moss Bluff Recreation Soccer Complex will allow the Lake Charles area to draw larger regional and national soccer tournaments. The complex includes parking for 550 vehicles, a concessions area, picnic pavilions and restroom facilities.

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PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. — Phase 1 of Wear Farm Park, a 116-acre multisports complex, will open in March.

Forty acres will be used for five baseball/softball fields, a football field, a multipurpose field, two shelters, a basketball court and a playground. Several softball and baseball tournaments are already being booked.

For indoor sports, the area will turn to the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge, scheduled to open in September. A 100,500-square-foot clear span space with a 30-foot ceiling is geared toward cheerleading and gymnastics competitions and volleyball tournaments.

The center also includes a 12,000-square-foot multipurpose hall and eight multipurpose rooms.