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The following article appeared in the Massachusetts State Sports Guide. Download the full guide below.

Sports planners out East often plan their events bearing many factors in mind. As always, cost is a factor, but so are the time of year, facility space and the various accommodations that their teams need. Those who choose to host their next tournament in Springfield, however, will have no trouble finding the right space and surrounding attractions to keep athletes and their families happy. With the help of the Greater Springfield CVB and Western Massachusetts Sports Commission, every planner is well-equipped to organize and execute any kind of competition, whether it’s at the novice or professional level.

In addition to boasting several state-of-the-art facilities, Springfield is the perfect place to embark on historic adventures and partake in local activities, from museum hopping to shopping and skiing.]

Notable Recent/Upcoming Events

  • USA vs Ireland Northeast Boxing Tour (March 15, 2018)
  • International Jugglers Association Annual Festival (July 16-22, 2018)
  • International Volleyball Hall of Fame Enshrinement (November 2018)
  • Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement (September 7, 2018)
  • Equine Affaire (November 8-11, 2018)

CVB/Sports Commissions Services Offered

  • Volunteer Staff
  • PR/Media Assistance
  • Signage
  • Site Visits
  • Transportation Assistance
  • Lodging Services
  • Grant Programs
  • Welcome Bags/Gifts
  • Itinerary Development
  • Event Planning Assistance

Click on tab to see more information about a specific facility

MassMutual Center

MassMutual Center

The MassMutual Center, home to the Springfield Thunderbirds, seats 8,000 people and hosts a variety of hockey and basketball tournaments in its modern arena. A 2003 renovation significantly expanded the facility to become Western Massachusetts’s largest convention center, with 100,000 square-feet of event space in addition to the arena. Another renovation in 2015 upgraded the arena’s technology to add new LED lighting, an 18×4-foot LED video scoreboard and an 85-foot LED board. MassMutual also offers accessible seating and 11 concessions stands during games, such as Center Grille and Chick-Fil-A. More dining options and parking are conveniently located nearby.

Sports: Hockey, basketball

Eastern States Exposition

Eastern States Exposition

Famous for its year-round horse shows, the Eastern States Exposition, or Big E, is the ideal facility for riders and their 1,500-pound teammates. Adjacent to the horse show field is a barn equipped with stables and horsemen’s supplies. Also known as “New England’s Great State fair,” the exposition grounds also hosts the country’s seventh-largest fair and the East coast’s largest agricultural event. Visitors will find a variety of fair food on-site, plus plenty of parking space.

Sports: Equestrianism

Mullins Center

Mullins Center

The Mullins Center, located on the University of Massachusetts Amherst campus, provides exceptional spaces for various sports. Inside, planners will find the William D. Mullins Memorial Center, the university’s prime sports complex with a basketball court that seats 9,493 people and a 200 x 95-foot hockey rink that seats 8,387. Underground locker rooms accompany these spaces. Neighboring the Memorial Center is an ice rink for novice skating and college-level hockey. The building additionally houses three racquetball courts for recreational and competitive teams.

Sports: Hockey, ice skating, racquetball, basketball

Three County Fairgrounds

Northampton’s Three County Fairgrounds is well-equipped to host any equestrian tournament. Planners can rent out an indoor 250 x 150-square-foot arena and warm up ring for horse shows and competitions, as well as up to five horse barns with on-site crews and equipment.

Sports: Equestrianism

Berkshire East Mountain Resort

Berkshire East

Berkshire East Mountain Resort, soon to claim the Catamount Ski Area, offers a multitude of activities and breathtaking views for athletes during any time of the year. Located on Mount Institute in Charlemont and Hawley, Massachusetts, this alpine ski area sports four runs, five lifts and stretches for 2.5 miles. The resort has undergone several renovations since the 1970s and now, due to renovations in 2011, is the world’s first ski location that is entirely powered by renewable energy. Besides skiing, athletes can raft along the Deerfield River or mountain bike on the Mohawk Trail. Visitors can grab a bite to eat from the Crazy Horse Bar and Grill.

Sports: Skiing, Snowboarding, snowmaking, snow tubing, mountain biking, rafting, zip lining

Springfield College

Springfield College Basketball

With Springfield College on the list, planners can choose from 10 facilities for their next tournament. Perhaps most popular is the Blake Arena, which seats up to 2,000 people for most indoor sports. Outdoors, visitors will find the gorgeously cut Stagg Field, which seats 3,867, and the Archie Allen Field, upgraded with entirely new equipment and an artificial turf for college baseball teams. Other outdoor fields include Blake Track, Potter Field, Schmid Sports Complex and the Appleton Tennis Courts. The Art Linkletter Natatorium provides an Olympic sized swimming pool, while the Doug Parker Wrestling Room and Kresge Gymnasium provide essential practice grounds for athletes. Visitors are welcome to park on campus.

Sports: Baseball, basketball, cross country, field hockey, football, golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis track & field, volleyball, wrestling

UMass Amherst

UMass Men's Lacrosse

Like Springfield College, UMass Amherst hosts fields and courts equipped with modern technology and spectator stands. UMass shares the William D. Mullins center with Springfield College. The most notable field, however, is the Warren P. McQuirk stadium, seating 17,000 people and preserving historic victories for over 50 years. The newest addition to UMass’s facilities is the Football Performance Center, a $34.5 million, 55,000-square-foot sports center filled with training rooms, meeting spaces and three hydro-therapy pools. The campus also sports a 32-year-old swimming pool dedicated to a past head coach, plus nine indoor and outdoor fields and a boathouse that can accommodate up to 72×80-foot boats.

Sports: Baseball, basketball, cross country, field hockey, football, hockey, lacrosse, rowing, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track & field

Things to do in Springfield

Springfield’s prime sports facilities are coupled with an impressive selection of lodging options. Planners, athletes and families can choose from over 10 hotels, including the Hampton Inn Downtown Springfield, Tower Square Hotel, the Sheraton Springfield, the Hilton Garden Inn Springfield, the LaQuinta Inn & Suites and Conference Center, the Holiday Inn Express and more.

Luckily for every planner and competitor, there’s a lot to do while staying in Springfield. Visitors should look into visiting Six Flags New England for a day of fun on the roller coasters, as well as Springfield’s popular museums. The Springfield Museums, for example, allow visitors to access science, history and art museums–five in total—with just one ticket. At the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss, kids can get a behind-the-scenes look at the making of their favorite classics. Visitors will also enjoy Yankee Candle Village, perfect for picking up scented gifts and special souvenirs. The Basketball Hall of Fame pays tribute to past players and inspires budding professionals. The highly anticipated MGM Springfield casino is newly opened.

Planner Perspective

The WMSC provided the MAAC with a small town atmosphere with big city amenities.

Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference: Rich Ensor (Commissioner)

The quality venues, community support and attractions in the area have made the Bay State Games one of the largest and most respected events in the country.

Bay State Games: Kevin Cummings (Executive Director)

The WMSC really helped us take our event to the next level. They really made our competition special and unique.

Daggett Gymnastics & Olympic Gold Medalist: Tim Daggett

How to Get to Springfield

By Car:Whether by car or bus, most visitors are able to reach Springfield at the intersection of I-90 and I-91.

By Train: Amtrak services are available to anyone who wishes to visit Springfield and Massachusetts’s other major cities, including Boston, Worcester and Cambridge.

By Air: Springfield is most easily accessed from the Bradley International Airport, just 18 miles away in Connecticut.

Contact Information

Company Name: Western Mass Sports Commission

Sports Sales Manager: Alicia Szenda

Title: Director of Sales

Telephone: 413-755-1346