NJCAA Announces Award of Cross Country Championships
30 Jun, 2020
The NJCAA has awarded championship locations for upcoming Division I Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships, as well as the newly created Division II championships.
In 2021, Richmond, VA will host the four-race championship at Pole Green Park. "We're thrilled and proud to welcome the 2021 NJCAA Cross Country Championship to our region next year," said Jerrine Lee, Director of Sports Development at Richmond Region Tourism. "Sports help invigorate civic pride. As sporting activities across the country were postponed due to COVID-19 this spring, events like the cross country championships are more important than ever for our communities. We can't wait to welcome some of the country's best college runners to the region for an exciting competition."
Pole Green Park is a multi-use facility located in Hanover County, VA. In addition to the cross country course, Pole Green Park features multipurpose fields, a community center, concessions, and ample parking space.
"We at Richard Bland are excited to be a part of hosting the NJCAA Cross Country Championships in Fall 2021," said Scott Newton, Richard Bland Director of Athletics. "I want to thank Jerrine and everybody at Richmond Region Tourism for including us on this major event. RBC and Richmond Region Tourism agree that Richmond is a special place to be able to host an event like this, and we are excited to have that opportunity in Fall 2021."
The 2022 Division I and Division II Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships were awarded to Leon County Tourism in Tallahassee, FL at Apalachee Regional Park. "We are honored to host the 2022 NJCAA Cross Country Championships in Tallahassee at the nationally recognized Apalachee Regional Park. Our community is dedicated to the sport of cross country and we look forward to welcoming fans, coaches, and most importantly student-athletes to what we believe will be the most memorable championship of their lives," expressed Kerri L. Post, Visit Tallahassee Executive Director.
Known for hosting record-setting cross country events, Apalachee Region Park currently serves as the host site for the NJCAA Region VIII Cross Country Championships. The 100-plus acre park has hosted cross country championship for various organizations including the FHSAA, the USATF, and the Atlantic Coast Conference (NCAA DI). Apalachee Region Park is set to host the NCAA Cross Country National Championships in 2021.
Rob Chaney, Director of Athletics for Tallahassee Community College expressed his excitement for the championship bid. "Bringing this event to Tallahassee has been a goal since the day we introduced the program in 2015, and we're very fortunate to have strong partnerships with both Visit Tallahassee and the Tallahassee running community, who shared the same vision. It will be exciting to watch this event come together over the next couple of years, and I'm just as anxious to see it raise the profile of cross country at Tallahassee Community College."
The Tom Rutledge Cross Country Course in Joplin, MO will serve as the site for the 2023 NJCAA DI and DII cross country championships hosted by Joplin Sports Authority.
"On behalf of the Joplin Sports Authority Board of Directors, our partners Missouri Southern State University and Twin Hills Golf and Country Club, we are pleased the NJCAA has selected Joplin to host two national championship events," said Craig Hull, Director of the Joplin Sports Authority. "Hosting the 2023 NJCAA Division I and II Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships will bring over 1,000 student-athletes onto the campus of MSSU and allow them to compete on a championship-caliber cross country course. A special thanks to Tom Rutledge and the athletic staff at Missouri Southern for its partnership and contributions to make this opportunity possible."
On the campus of Missouri Southern State University (NAIA), the Tom Rutledge Cross Country Course is a grass course loop finished south of the starting line through a picturesque arch. The course hosts the annual First to the Finish Southern Stampede, one of the largest high school and college cross country meets in the Midwest. Joplin Sports Authority and the Tom Rutledge Cross Country Course has also hosted the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships in 1999, 2007, 2012, 2015, and 2017.