Ultimate Frisbee returns to Martinsville-Henry County
Friday March 9, 2012
Ultimate Frisbee will return to the Smith River Sports Complex (SRSC) on March 17th and 18th bringing college teams from all over the east coast to the Martinsville-Henry County area. The event, Virginia is for Layouts, is organized and sponsored by Without Limits in conjunction with Smith College LunaDisc and will run on Saturday the 17th from 8:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. and on Sunday the 18th from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Admission is free to the public and concessions will be open.
"The facilities at the Smith River Sports Complex are beautiful. The fields are Nationals-level quality and all of the amenities are top-notch. The staff is incredibly helpful and makes management of large events easy. Also, the location is very accessible for a number of East Coast teams," stated Michelle Ng, co-founder of Without Limits, when asked why Without Limits decided to return to SRSC and the area. "The community was so welcoming in the fall-- the players and organizers were overwhelmed by how supportive the community was and how great the facilities were".
The tournament is part-competition, part-skills and strategy development. Some of the best D-III teams (schools with < 7500 students) in the country are competing in this event. Last year's Top 3 teams as well as numerous other D-III Nationals Qualifiers will be in attendance.
Some of the top players and coaches in the country are coming in to guest coach and mentor these teams-- these people have played on Team USA, won the College MVP award, been All-Region players, etc. Each of these players will be spending the entire weekend with a team and focusing on helping that team take the next step in their development. In addition, there will be skills clinics and classroom sessions going on all weekend to provide a holistic way for teams and players to improve.
Ultimate is a fast-paced field sport that combines elements of basketball, soccer, and football. Played with seven players on each team, what differentiates Ultimate from many other sports is that it is self-officiated, meaning there are no referees even at its highest levels. Because of this unique rule, players are expected to demonstrate good sportsmanship, thus creating a very active and supportive Ultimate community.
There will be 16 college Division A teams and 12 college Division B teams which will bring over 600 athletes to our area for the weekend. A few of the colleges that are competing are coming as far away as Boston, MA, Hanover, NH, Columbia, SC, Northfield, MN, Grinnell, IA, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta, GA.
"Hundreds of athletes will fill the streets, hotels, restaurants, and shops of Martinsville-Henry County and we at SRSC are proud to be able to continue to bring in these events to help our economy," said Billy Russo, Director of Operations for the Smith River Sports Complex. "We ask the entire community to welcome these visitors with open arms and with excellent customer service and hospitality".
The Martinsville-Henry County EDC's Tourism Division partnered with the Smith River Sports Complex, event organizers and area businesses to provide complementary welcome bags to each athlete. The bags contain maps, lists of places to shop and dine, attractions that the visiting athletes might want to check out and other promotional materials.
According to Jennifer Doss, Director of Tourism for Martinsville-Henry County "It speaks highly of our community for an organization like Without Limits to return and book a second event. The athletes were very impressed with the hospitality of our area and many commented how they appreciated their warm welcome displayed on marques and sandwich boards throughout the community."
Any business wishing to contribute promotional items for welcome bags at this and future events held at the Smith River Sports Complex may do so by calling the Martinsville-Henry County Visitor Center at 276.632.8006.
For more information visit SouthernVirginiaSports.com or call (276) 638-5200. To learn more about Without Limits visit withoutlimitsultimate.com.