On Friday, August 19, USA Weightlifting was informed the River Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana would be unavailable for the National University Championship and National Under 25 Championship. The reason is that the River Center has been requisitioned as the primary shelter and housing for those displaced in the Baton Rouge floods.
As a result, the 2016 National University Championship and 2016 National Under 25 Championship will now take place at the Alario Center in the Jefferson Parish area of New Orleans, Louisiana. The dates of the event will remain September 22-25, 2016.
The Alario Center last hosted the sport of Weightlifting when New Orleans hosted the 2000 Olympic Trials, which saw Team USA Weightlifting’s last Gold Medalist, Tara Nott, qualify for the Sydney Olympic Games.
The Alario Center offers free parking for those who are driving to the competition, or who are renting a vehicle for the weekend.
USA Weightlifting and the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation are working to confirm new hotel arrangements and hope to be able to confirm booking links for those who have not already reserved a room in Baton Rouge by the end of Wednesday at latest. For those who have already booked in Baton Rouge, please see below.
“Firstly, our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Baton Rouge at this difficult time,” USA Weightlifting CEO Phil Andrews said. “We recognize the incredibly difficult position that the city is in at this time. At the same time, I want to thank and recognize the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation, the Alario Center and Jefferson Parish for stepping in to assist us in very quick order working over the weekend to ensure we had a new venue.”
Further details, including on the ground transportation and new hotel reservation links will be posted as soon as USA Weightlifting has them.
Information for those already booked into Baton Rouge, Louisiana: All reservations currently placed at the Belle of Baton Rouge in Baton Rouge will be moved over to the new hotel, and hotel confirmations will be communicated by the end of Wednesday.
While USA Weightlifting cannot speak for the airlines who fly to Baton Rouge, our understanding is that since this is a natural disaster issue other airlines are also accommodating changes to reservations.
Members should contact the airline they are booked with in order to adjust their reservation to MSY (New Orleans):
United Airlines – 800-864-8331 (Customer Service) or 800-841-0460 (Olympic Desk).
American Airlines – 800-433-7300
Delta Airlines – 404-773-0305
For any questions or assistance, please do not hesitate to reach out to USA Weightlifting at email@example.com or 719-866-4508