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Daytona Beach to Host NAIA Football National Championships 2014-2016

17 Dec, 2013


10,000-Seat Municipal Stadium Will Host Three Consecutive Title Contests
Daytona Beach will host the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Football National Championships December 20, 2014, December 19, 2015, and December 17, 2016.  The three title contests will be played at the 10,000-seat Municipal Stadium operated by the City of Daytona Beach.
Each of the championship games is projected to realize over $1 million in economic impact and generate 1,000 hotel room stays in the Daytona Beach area.  The games, involving competition from nearly 300 small colleges and universities across the nation, will be broadcast nationally showcasing the recently renovated Municipal Stadium.
“This is a tremendous team effort,” said Jeffrey Hentz, president/CEO, Daytona Beach Area CVB.  “We look forward to welcoming thousands of fans each year during one of our shoulder seasons.  Expectations are for an incredible economic impact throughout the Daytona Beach area.”
Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium, also known as Larry Kelly Field, was built in 1988 and has seen a variety of sporting events during its lifetime.  With the addition of field turf, part of a $1.4 million upgrade that also included renovations to its bleachers, locker rooms and press area, the Stadium is the home field of NCAA Division I Bethune-Cookman (Fla.), alongside several local high schools.
“We are pleased to partner with the Daytona Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau to attract this marquee event to Daytona Beach,” said Daytona Beach Mayor Derrick Henry.  “We have an excellent football venue and I look forward to following NAIA’s 2014 season and watching the excitement build about traveling to Daytona Beach.”
Another recently announced major sporting event is the professional women’s tennis tournament to be held January 19-26 at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach, the headquarters of the United States Tennis Association Florida (USTA).  This tournament is part of a national circuit of 46 USTA competitions and will feature 64 players during the weeklong event.
Growing in popularity as a host destination for annual sporting events and competitions such as the NCA & NDA Collegiate Cheer and Dance Championship, Daytona Beach historically welcomes 8 million visitors per year and is recognized worldwide for its annual racing-themed sporting events including Rolex 24 at Daytona, Daytona 500 and Coke Zero 400. Daytona Beach’s famed heritage also claims the U.S. headquarters of LPGA and NASCAR, and is home to Daytona International Speedway, the ‘World Center of Racing.’
“We are extremely excited to have our Football National Championship make its way to Florida,” said Jim Carr, NAIA president and CEO.  “We are confident that the City of Daytona Beach will continue to move the needle forward for this tremendous event and provide an outstanding experience for our student-athletes, coaches and fans.”
About the Daytona Beach Area: Discover the new Daytona Beach and its surrounding area, a resurging destination along Florida’s East Coast comprising eight distinct communities.  With more than 15,000 beds, the destination boasts accommodations for all lifestyles and budgets including resorts, B&Bs, hotels and everything in between. Visitors can enjoy the quintessential vacation experience beginning with the Daytona Beach Boardwalk and Pier, or choose from a surprising list of attractions and cultural venues and a colorful culinary scene. With 23 miles of world-famous beaches ideal for shelling, swimming and surfing, it is no surprise tripadvisor® named Daytona Beach a 2012 Top 10 Beach Destination in the U.S.  The destination’s lively character welcomes visitors making lasting memories while seizing the day … or better yet, seizing the Daytona. www.DaytonaBeach.com
About NAIA: Since 1937, the NAIA has administered programs and championships in proper balance with the overall educational experience. In 2000, the NAIA reaffirmed its purpose to enhance the character-building aspects of sport.  Through the Champions of Character program, the NAIA seeks to create an environment in which every student-athlete, coach, official and spectator is committed to the true spirit of competition through five core values:  integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership. www.NAIA.org.
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