DETROIT, Mich. (July 19, 2017) – More than 15,000 participants and 30,000 spectators will travel to metro Detroit later next week for the 51st annual AAU Junior Olympic Games, the largest national multi-sport event for youth in the United States, and have brought more than $50 million in economic impact to the previous host cities since 2010.
The 10-day event, July 27-Aug. 5, will feature 18 sports competitions, including the AAU’s marquee track and field event at Eastern Michigan University on July 29-Aug. 5. Nearly 250 AAU Track and Field national records have been set and reset at the Games since 2011 with 46 records established during the 2016 Games alone.
“We are incredibly excited to be back in the Motor City,” said Paul Campbell, who has served as Chairman for the annual event for the last 24 years. “This event has been the crown jewel of the AAU for a long time because of its prominence and popularity, but also because of the first-class cities that have hosted the AAU Junior Olympic Games over the last 51 years.”
The AAU Junior Olympic Games have been conducted in 19 states and 30 cities across the United States since 1967. As one of the premier events in the nation, youth athletes have used the event as the starting point to an ultra-successful professional career.
Notable AAU Junior Olympic Games alumni include: Jackie Joyner Kersee (track and field), Carl Lewis (track and field), Greg Louganis (diving), Kathy McMillan (track and field), Charles Foster (track and field), Robert Griffin III (track and field), Jordy Nelson (track and field) and Ezekiel Elliott (track and field).
“Hosting the AAU Junior Olympic Games will again put the spotlight on our region and, of course, we will be ready to roll out the red carpet for the participants, coaches and parents,” Detroit Sports Commission Director Kris Smith said. “Along with the economic benefits the games will generate, it’s exciting to be the place where young athletes from across the United States will come to make a name for themselves.”
New to the Games this year is a Pickleball exhibition and clinic hosted by the USA Pickleball Association. Pickleball is a rapidly growing racquet sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and table tennis. The exhibition will be held at the Suburban Collection Showplace on July 28-29. For the first time this year, AAU Wrestling will be hosting its first girls wrestling division on July 31-August 1.
Visit www.aaujrogames.org for more information about the AAU Junior Olympic Games.
Media interested in covering this event should contact Cody Norman, AAU Public Relations Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT THE AAU:
Founded in 1888, the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) is one of the largest, non-profit, volunteer, event organizations in the United States. The “Sports for All, Forever” philosophy is shared by over 700,000 participants and 150,000 volunteers. The AAU annually licenses 35 sports programs and more than 375,000 licensed events each year. AAU alumni include LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers), Dwyane Wade (Chicago Bulls), Madison Bumgarner (San Francisco Giants), Kris Bryant (Chicago Cubs) and Diana Taurasi (Los Angeles Sparks). A multi-sport organization, the AAU is dedicated exclusively to the development of amateur sports. Visit www.aausports.org for more information.
ABOUT THE DETROIT SPORTS COMMISSION:
The mission of the Detroit Sports Commission is to market and sell metro Detroit as a premier destination for regional, national and international amateur sporting events. The DSC is a not-for-profit charitable organization, IRS 501 (c)(3), and a subsidiary of the Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Cody Norman, AAU PR Manager
Marty Dobek, Detroit Sports Commission
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