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Lubbock’s Newly Renovated Athletic Complex Is Ready for Action

21 May, 2020

By: Judy Leand

Set to become the sports hub of Texas, Lubbock  has upped its game with the newly renovated, world-class Berl Huffman Athletic Complex. This state-of-the-art venue was unveiled in spring 2020 and is able to host just about any sport requiring a flat field including soccer, field hockey, rugby, Ultimate, football and lacrosse. 

Two years ago, Market Lubbock and the City of Lubbock partnered on a $7 million investment to upgrade the facility, which after many years of hosting successful tournaments and events had become worn and tired. “The actual renovation has been in the works for about a year,” says Scott Harrison, Director of Sports for Lubbock Sports. 

The complex covers 151 total acres with more than 50 fields, and the completed work includes three entrance and exit roads off Loop 289, food truck areas, a new irrigation system that uses recycled water, multiple new restroom facilities, and accessible parking for all fields. 

With the use of moveable goals, the fields can be easily reconfigured based on the event, allowing the complex to easily accommodate small-sided games such as 7v7 and 4v4 soccer, as well as sports that require bigger fields such as Punt, Pass and Kick competitions, rugby and more.

The Berl Huffman Athletic Complex also features 350,000 square feet of synthetic turf championship fields that can hold up to eight games simultaneously and provides covered bleachers and pavilions as well as LED lighting. Tournament directors will be happy to know that games can be played concurrently at the park’s additional fields, giving the complex the ability to host the largest events. 

The competitions to be held at the facility, both regional and national, are expected to include high school and college contests and will cater to a broad age range of male and female athletes from youth through adult. In coming years, the destination would like to host about 20 events annually, according to Harrison. He also points out that because of Lubbock’s strong history and culture of soccer, and its unwavering support of multiple youth soccer organizations, the complex will likely be dominated by that sport.

With the complex’s renovation now complete, the goal is to get key events reestablished in coming seasons, says Harrison. For example, in previous years, up to 200 teams have competed in the West Texas Invitational Soccer Cup, and Lubbock is working to reach or surpass this number over the next several years. Looking ahead, says Harrison, “This is going to be the premier soccer complex in the state, and we now have the capability of putting on big-time tournaments and giving them full service. We want to be a premier destination for youth soccer.” 

To help ensure that every event runs smoothly, Lubbock Sports offers a wide range of support services to owners and rights holders, including welcome bags, on-site registration support, name badges and pre-registration assistance. Lubbock can also help secure tournament officials and referees thanks to a networking partnership with other Texas sports cities such as Abilene and Midland. 

A True Sports Hub

Baseball/Softball: Lubbock is a hotbed for baseball and softball and is proud of its diamond sports venues. In addition to the Berl Huffman Athletic Complex, event organizers can choose from public and private facilities such as Dan Law Field and Rocky Johnson Softball Complex, both at Texas Tech University; Dirk West Complex; Hays Field at Lubbock Christian University; Hodges Park; Lubbock area high schools; and Lubbock Youth Sports Complex.

Basketball: Facilities range from local gyms to championship settings including Lubbock Christian University’s Rip Griffin Center and Texas Tech’s United Supermarket Arena. Additionally, the Apex Center boasts eight basketball hardwood and multi-purpose courts (which host volleyball games as well).

Boxing: The noble art is a big draw in Lubbock and the facilities are a knock-out win. The city can host larger competitions at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center, allowing organizers to put everything under one room: competition, check-in, the draw and meetings, as well as merchandise sales and clinics. 

Football: In Texas, football is a way of life, and Lubbock offers many exceptional championship facilities. Among them are Lubbock’s Lowry Field, Frenship’s Tiger Stadium and AT&T’s Jones Stadium at Texas Tech.

Martial Arts: The city is home to the only regulation-size Sanshou mat in North America. Numerous multi-purpose facilities, including the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center and Lubbock’s United Martial Arts Training Center, offer exciting settings for athletes and spectators alike. 

Swimming & Diving: Lubbock’s Pete Ragus Aquatic Center is perfect for swim and dive meets, offering two eight-lane pools, a center diving well with two 3-meter boards and three 1-meter boards, a Colorado Timing System and state-of-the-art scoreboard.

Triathlon: Lubbock’s Buffalo Springs Lake has served as the home of the 70.3 IRONMAN World Championship qualifier.

Track & Field: The Texas Tech Sports Performance Center is one of only three indoor track facilities in Texas. It provides a 200-meter banked track, a 100-yard football field, an athletic training facility and a strength and conditioning center.

Off the Field

Lubbock currently offers 6,400 hotel rooms in various price points and service levels throughout the city, with more to be completed this year. Hotel ballroom space is also available for banquets, awards dinners, assemblies and other events. There are plenty of restaurants that welcome large groups, and visitors can choose from a wide variety of culinary styles. 

Downtown Lubbock delivers live music, shopping, museums, wineries, a flourishing craft beer scene and a vibrant arts community. Adventure Park, one of Lubbock’s newest attractions, boasts go-karts, a climbing wall, bumper boats, a game room, a laser maze, bumper cars, the Adventure Tower and mini-golf. 

For organizers desiring to set up an expo or trade show to accompany a sports event, the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center provides 95,000 square feet of flexible space. A total of 40,000 square feet of column-free space is ideal for exhibit halls or even futsal games. The column-free area includes pullout bleachers that can seat 1,400, permanent balcony seating for 1,595, two dressing rooms and a 16-channel permanent sound system.  

Getting There

Lubbock is nicknamed “Hub City” for the five major highways that pass through town. Additionally, the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport puts this popular West Texas destination within easy reach of a multitude of sports-oriented travelers. 

The Berl Huffman Athletic Complex is located in north Lubbock, just five minutes from downtown and a mere 11 minutes from the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport that is served by three major airlines, giving event organizers easy access to the city. Rental cars are available, as are ridesharing companies such as Lyft and Uber. Airport shuttles also run to many local hotels.

For more than a decade, Lubbock’s staff has built a reputation for going above and beyond to make every event a winner. “The hospitality that we provide from start to finish of your event is exceptional,” says Harrison.  SDM

For more information about how the Lubbock Sports team can help you plan and implement a successful sporting event, call 806-747-5232 or e-mail scott@visitlubbock.org. 

About the Author

Judy Leand

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