Idyllically situated between Cleveland and the greater Pittsburgh area, Canton, Ohio is a perfect combination of family-friendly fun, spectacular sports facilities, delectable eateries and endless lodging options to house even the largest traveling sports teams.
Best known as the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the first professional football team, the Canton Bulldogs, Canton is brimming with remarkable sports history.
Beyond its interesting sports history, Canton allows visitors to uncover local and national history at its museums and national historic sites. With a vibrant arts and music culture, Canton has an energetic nightlife and a downtown with various galleries, studios, unique shops, theaters, concerts and festivals.
This, combined with endless outdoor parks and an extensive network of trails that cover the greater Northeast Ohio region, make Canton an extraordinary destination for your next sports event.
Notable Recent/Upcoming Events
- USA Softball 18U Girls Eastern National Softball Tournament (July 26-30, 2017)
- USA Softball 18U 16U 14U 12U 10U, Slow Pitch National Championships
- World Youth Football Championship (December 14-17, 2018)
- OHSAA Swimming & Diving State Championships (February 20-23, 2019)
- NCAA Stagg Bowl DIII Football Championship (December 9, 2020 & December 18, 2021)
- NFL Pre-Season game at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium (annually during Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week)
CVB/Sports Commissions Services Offered
- Volunteer Staff
- PR/Media Assistance
- Site Visits
- Transportation Assistance
- Lodging Services
- Grant Programs
- Welcome Bags/Gifts
- Itinerary Development
- Event Planning Assistance
- VIP Visitor Discount Program
Click on tab to see more information about a specific facility
- Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium
- National Football and Youth Sports Complex
- C.T. Branin Natatorium
- Canton Memorial Civic Center
- Diamond Youth Sports Complex
- Stark County Disc Golf Courses: Arboretum-Spiker Disc Golf Course, Oak Ledges Disc Golf Course
- Center Ice Sports Complex
Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium
Dedicated to world-class hospitality and providing guests unique catering and Hall of Fame service, Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium features 28,000 square feet of stadium space, 23,000 seats, an NFL caliber press box and was recently profiled as one of the “13 Game-Changing NFL Stadiums” by Forbes. This state-of-the-art facility is known for hosting the annual Hall of Fame Game, along with several high school and college football games. Exciting upcoming sporting events at the stadium include the OHSAA Football State Championships, the NCAA Stagg Bowl DIII Football Championship and the NFL Pre-Season game during Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week powered by Johnson Controls.
National Football and Youth Sports Complex
Football, lacrosse and soccer teams from across the nation are flocking to the National Football and Youth Sports Complex for its state-of-the-art multi-purpose turf fields and championship grass field. These lighted fields come fully-equipped with the latest technology and video capabilities. With the first phase of an eight-field project complete, the complex’s $800 million investment includes amenities such as Hall of Fame admission, dinner banquets, character development camps and Gold Jacket appearances. In 2017, the facility hosted more than 30 events and 100,000 athletes and visitors, accommodating a variety of local and national teams, tournaments and leagues. In Dec. of 2018, the World Youth Football Championship will be held at the complex.
Sports: Football, lacrosse, soccer
C.T. Branin Natatorium
Expected to host the 2019 OHSAA Swimming and Diving State Championships, C.T. Branin Natatorium has hosted several other noteworthy events, including USA and Masters swimming and diving championships and championships for the Ohio High School Athletic Association, NAIA and NCAA, deeming it the Midwest’s premier swimming facility. Amenities at this top-notch swimming facility include wave breaker lanes, a Colorado timing system, new touch pads, seating for 2,400 spectators, scoreboards, two varsity lockers rooms, two instructor locker rooms, two general public locker rooms and a full-service concession stand. The pool itself features eight 50-meter lanes and a diving well with two one-meter boards and one three-meter board. New additions to the facility include a gymnasium, wrestling room, lighting and sound systems.
Sports: Swimming, gymnastics, wrestling
Canton Memorial Civic Center
Canton’s home for sports, music and entertainment since 1951, Canton Memorial Civic Center has hosted countless world-class entertainers, politicians and, of course, athletes. Home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival, the civic center has seen football greats such as Barry Sanders, Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Joe Montana. Besides football events, the facility has also hosted the OHSAA Boys and Girls High School Basketball tournament and the prized Canton Charge, an NBA D-league team owned and affiliated with the Cleveland Cavaliers. With the capacity to seat 5,200 spectators, the center’s amenities include an on-site box office, on-site parking and four permanent concession stands.
Sports: Football, basketball
Diamond Youth Sports Complex
Located within Diamond Community Park, Diamond Youth Sports Complex extends 42 acres with well-maintained fields always kept in mint condition. The sports complex has hosted a myriad of tournaments, leagues, competitions and practices. This year-round facility can accommodate up to 16 soccer or lacrosse fields and features an additional indoor sports complex with five baseball and softball fields, four bocce ball courts and a jogging path. Further amenities at the facility include a full-service concession stand, picnic pavilion and an indoor community and hospitality room.
Sports: Baseball, softball, soccer, lacrosse
Stark County Disc Golf Courses: Arboretum-Spiker Disc Golf Course, Oak Ledges Disc Golf Course
For sports planners looking for a prime disc golf tournament location, look no further than Stark County’s disc golf courses, including Arboretum-Spiker Disc Golf Course and Oak Ledges Disc Golf Course. At Arboretum-Spiker Disc Golf Course, leagues can enjoy a nine-basket permanent course through a mostly flat and lightly wooded terrain. A beginner and family-friendly course, Arboretum-Spiker features shorter holes, nearby camping and is cart-friendly. Established in 1994, Oak Ledges Disc Golf Course is a more challenging course with 18 holes and a very hilly and moderately wooded terrain. The course features a variety of holes and elevation changes with many large, majestic trees throughout.
Sports: Disc golf
Center Ice Sports Complex
Located just south of the Akron-Canton Airport, Center Ice Sports Complex in North Canton focuses on safe and friendly sports events and is locally-owned and operated. With year-round hockey and figure skating programs with public open skate sessions and a full-service hockey pro shop, this cutting-edge facility has an NHL sized rink, year-round programming, a large video arcade and a full menu cafe. Open skating is available as well as affordable prices for groups, birthday parties and private rentals. Amenities at the facility include a public address system, an electronic scoreboard and locker rooms.
Sports: Hockey, figure skating
Things to do in Canton
With four distinct seasons year-round, Canton has a plethora of indoor and outdoor activities for players, families and spectators to indulge in when off the fields and stands. As the birthplace of professional American football, Canton’s Pro Football Hall of Fame Museum offers guests the opportunity to get an insider’s tour of the museum by exploring exhibits with experienced docents, all at discounted prices for groups.
At William McKinley Presidential Library and Museum, the permanent exhibit chronicles the life and career of the nation’s 25th president from his birth to tragic death. Visitors can gaze upon 1900 campaign memorabilia, McKinley’s piano, furnishing and rocking chair.
For those needing a leisurely outdoor getaway, the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath has everything you could possibly imagine, including hiking, biking, fishing, backpacking, canoeing, kayaking, picnicking and golfing.
Adrenaline junkies will love Clay’s Park Resort Adventure Waterpark and Sluggers and Putters Amusement Park. At Clay’s Park, guests are invited to partake in outdoor camping and water park rides for memories that will last a lifetime. Sluggers and Putters has all the essential amusement park attractions, including laser tag, Go-karts and water bumper boats.
How to Canton
By Car: Canton can be easily accessed primarily by I-77, with connection to Akron and Cleveland in the north, New Philadelphia and Marietta in Southern Ohio and through West Virginia and the Carolinas.
By Air: Canton’s two nearest airports are Akron-Canton Regional Airport (CAK) and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE). Akron-Canton lies just ten minutes outside of the city, where Cleveland Hopkins is situated approximately one hour from Canton. Cleveland Hopkins is a hub for Continental Airlines and is the 43rd busiest airport in the nation.
Company Name: Visit Canton
Sports Sales Manager: Mary Vlahos
Title: Vice President of Sales