National Congress of State Games awards 2013 State Games of America to Hershey-Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

12 Dec, 2010

The National Congress of State Games (NCSG) announced today that it has awarded the 2013 State Games of America to Hershey-Harrisburg, Pa. The awarding of this event ended an eight-month process of bidding, bid presentations and site visits. The tentative dates are late July and early August.

State Games of America (SGA) is a biennial Olympic-style sports event featuring competition between medal winners (gold, silver, bronze) from the 31 State Games across the nation. The 2011 SGA will be held in San Diego, August 4-7, and over 10,000 athletes are again expected to compete. The event is a property of the National Congress of State Games.

Colorado Springs has hosted three record-setting editions of the national event, attracting a total of 30,577 athletes in 2005, 2007 and 2009, including a record 10,803 competitors from 48 states in 2007. The three Games have brought the city and region more than $33 million in economic impact and brought the young event squarely into the national spotlight.

The city also set the record for attendance at the Opening Ceremony, with 10,007 spectators on hand for the 2007 event at the Colorado Springs World Arena, where Olympic figure skating star Michelle Kwan opened the Games by lighting the official torch.

In 2013, over 30 different sports are tentatively planned, with some of the projected venues to include the Giant Center, Farm Show Complex and Expo Center, Hersheypark Stadium, Redland Soccer Complex, Marysville Lions Park, Twin Ponds Arena, Milton Hershey and Hershey High Schools and Harrisburg Community College. The 2013 State Games of America will be combined with the Keystone State Games, Pennsylvania’s annual state games competition, and over 10,000 athletes are expected to compete.

One of the most anticipated events at every State Games of America is the Olympic-style Opening Ceremonies, where athletes parade in under their home state banner, followed by entertainment and a torch lighting. Some of the potential venues for the Opening Ceremonies in Hershey-Harrisburg 2013 include Hersheypark Stadium, the Giant Center or Metro Bank Park.

"We could not be more excited to bring our marquee national event to Hershey-Harrisburg in three years," said National Congress of State Games President Barclay Kruse. "State Games of America is a diverse, exciting event, and because so many of the competitors are youth athletes, it has an energy that is absolutely unique to a major national event of this type. Get ready Hershey-Harrisburg, you’re going to have a great time!"

The Hershey-Harrisburg bid was spearheaded by Gregg Cook and Mary Smith of the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau and Owen Costello, Executive Director of the Keystone State Games. The National Congress of State Games site-selection effort was headed by Pete Lampman, Executive Director of the Coventry Commonwealth Games of Virginia, and chair of the NCSG State Games of America committee.

"The Hershey Harrisburg region is honored to have been selected as the host location for the 2013 State Games of America," said Mary Smith, President of the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau. "Not only will hosting this national event bring a great sense of pride to our communities but it translates into a significant boost to the local economies of the City of Harrisburg and the Town of Hershey – as both will be playing major roles in housing athletes and spectators – and facilitating the multi-sporting events that make up the State Games of America.

State Games of America has been held in St Louis (1999 and 2001), Hartford, Conn. (2003), Colorado Springs (2005, 2007 and 2009) and San Diego (2011).

About the National Congress of State Games
The National Congress of State Games (NCSG) is a national membership organization comprised of 31 Summer State Games and 10 Winter State Games organizations. The NCSG is a community-based member of the United States Olympic Committee.

Many of the State Games competitions across the country include Olympic or Pan American sports such as: basketball, bowling, cycling, diving, figure skating, tennis, taekwondo, gymnastics, ice hockey, road races, soccer, softball, swimming, track and field, and volleyball; as well as a wide variety of regionally strong sports such as arm wrestling, field hockey, horseshoes, equestrian, rock climbing and curling.

Each year over 300,000 athletes of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels take part in State Games competitions nationwide. An additional one million spectators attend State Games events made possible by the work of thousands of coaches, parents, officials, sponsors and more than 100,000 volunteers.

About the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau
The Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB) is the official Convention & Visitors Bureau serving Dauphin and Perry Counties. HHRVB is committed to actively marketing the region to Leisure Travelers, Business Travelers and Business Events (Meetings & Conventions), the Sports Market, and Groups (Student & Youth, Religious, Family Reunion, Motor Coach). The bureau is a non-profit organization that is partnership based.

About the Keystone State Games
The mission of the Keystone State Games is to promote physical fitness and sports activity as a health improvement and disease prevention strategy for all Pennsylvanians and to create an expanded, coordinated and citizen-sponsored program of physical fitness and amateur athletic competition through its annual Summer and Senior Games.

Since its inception in 1983, the Keystone State Games, Inc. has attracted over 350,000 participants of various age groups into their events.


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