Sports events are thrilling to attend, but not very exciting to plan. Anyone who has organized an athletic tournament understands how difficult and time consuming it can be. The result is rewarding, but the work involved can be exhausting. Unless you’ve selected a destination like the Roanoke Valley in Virginia’s Blue Ridge.
Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, the Roanoke Valley provides a convenient location for athletes, teams and spectators from across the country. Apart from its accessibility, Roanoke Valley has years of experience hosting sports events, with the City of Salem welcoming more than 70 NCAA Championships. The climate makes for mild weather all year round, helping to accommodate all types of outdoor sports. The variety of attractions, dining and shopping give attendees plenty to do before, during and after the event. Sports planners will find relief with the experienced tournament directors and facility managers in Virginia’s Blue Ridge, who provide assistance to make your sports event a success.
What is there to do in Virginia’s Blue Ridge
Outdoor enthusiasts will love making a trek or taking a bike ride up Roanoke’s most famous mountain: Mill Mountain. It’s home to the iconic Roanoke Star, a great spot to take a selfie. After you’ve made your way to the top and taken your photo, you can enjoy over 10 miles of mountain biking trails. For those who enjoy a good scenic ride, head to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The 469-mile drive winds along the Blue Ridge Mountains, giving visitors some of the best mountain views in the country. Those traveling with small children should stop by the Mill Mountain Zoo, home to 85 species of animals and the famous Zoo Choo miniature train. Kids will also love exploring the underground world of the Dixie Caverns, the only caverns in southwest Virginia.
The Virginia Museum of Transportation is a must-see for anyone visiting the area. Located in a century-old freight station, the museum features a collection of steam, diesel and electric locomotives, as well as automotive and aviation exhibits, buggies, a trolley bus and a Jupiter Rocket. If you want to learn more about the Roanoke Valley history, stop by the Blue Ridge Institute and Museum, where traditional Blue Ridge crafts, music, customs and decorative arts are showcased through rotating exhibits. The History Museum of Western Virginia traces the growth of the valley, showing how life was lived centuries ago and what shaped the region to what it is today. Discover the life of famous educator and writer Booker T. Washington at the Booker T. Washington National Monument. Learn about his remarkable story through exhibits, films and tours.
Be sure to stop by the National D-Day Memorial, located in Bedford, Virginia. This area experienced the highest per capita D-Day losses in the country, and the nine-acre memorial pays tribute to those who lost their lives.
No matter what your interests, Virginia’s Blue Ridge has something for everyone.
Let us connect you with Virginia’s Blue Ridge
Director of Sports Development
Phone: 540-362-7848 ext. 127
- Excellent geographical location in Mid-Atlantic Region
- Affordable family destination
- Assistance with housing
- Social media marketing
- Local PR & media coverage
- Welcome signage
- Experienced Tournament Directors and Facility Managers
The NCAA appreciates the long partnership with the City of Salem in hosting over 85 championship events since 1993. The teams, officials, and spectators leave Salem with fond memories of their championship experience.
– John Bugner, NCCA
Carey and the City of Salem stand high among championship event venues. Carey’s experience in planning, staging and execution of championships large & small is unparalleled; while his impeccable professionalism coupled with a genuine and consistent personal touch sets him and his city even further apart from the field when it comes to holding championship events tailored specifically for the client. Somehow, Carey and his extended staff are able to make your first event with them feel like, “We’ve been here before and once again they’re knocking it out of the park!
– Breon Hagans, CIAA
Virginia’s Blue Ridge Sports Venues
Salem Football Stadium
Salem Football Stadium is a 7,157-seat municipal stadium that opened in August 1985 after a rapid construction process. Salem Stadium has been the home of the NCAA Division III Football Championship game since 1993. Since the Stagg Bowl debuted in southwest Virginia, the stadium has undergone several improvements to better accommodate both players and fans, including new lights, an expanded press box and the installation of synthetic Field Turf prior to the 2007 game.
Salem Memorial Ballpark
Haley Toyota Field at Salem Memorial Ballpark is a minor league baseball park located in Salem, Virginia, and is part of the James E. Taliferro Sports and Entertainment Complex along with the Salem Civic Center and Salem Football Stadium, approximately 1 mile southeast of downtown Salem. Opened on August 7, 1995, it is home to the Boston Red Sox Class A Carolina League farm team and can seat 6,300 people.
Sports: Basketball, hockey, volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling, boxing
The Berglund Center (previously Roanoke Civic Center) is one of Western Virginia’s premier full-service facilities. The multi-purpose facility can accommodate sports events of all sizes, and hosts more than 350 events every year. It features a 10,500 seat Coliseum, 2,148 seat Performing Arts Theatre, 10,000 square feet Exhibit Hall, and a new 46,000 square feet Special Events Center. Located within walking distance of downtown Roanoke, the Berglund Center is easily accessible from nearby hotels.
James I. Moyer Sports Complex
The James I. Moyer Sports Complex is home to the Salem High School Girls Fast Pitch Softball Team and the Roanoke College Women’s Fast Pitch Softball Team. The complex hosts many events which draw state and national athletes along with many spectators to the City of Salem. The events the complex hosts can range from youth, adult, and high school players to collegiate and national level players. Some of the past, present and future events that have been held at this facility are the USA Softball National Team – Aiming for Athens 2004 Tour, NCAA Women’s Fast Pitch Softball National Championships for Division II and Division III, NSA Girls Fast-Pitch Class B East World Series, ASA Men’s East Class C & D Slow-Pitch National Championship, USSSA Class D State Tournament and Virginia Dixie Youth District and State Tournaments.
Salem Civic Center
Sports: Basketball, volleyball, football, baseball, tennis
The Salem Civic Center Complex offers a diverse group of facilities that accommodate a variety of sports. An indoor arena with a basketball court has hosted numerous NCAA Championships over the years. On the grounds are Salem Football Stadium, which annually hosts the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl – the NCAA Division III National Championship. The complex also features Lewis Gale Field at Salem Memorial Baseball Stadium, which seats 6,300 and has hosted NCAA Baseball Championships. This is also home of the Salem Red Sox, a minor league affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. The complex is rounded out with eight tennis courts and two youth baseball fields.
River’s Edge Sports Complex
Sports: Baseball, softball, soccer, tennis
The River’s Edge Sports Complex sits by the Roanoke River and at the foot of scenic Mill Mountain. River’s Edge has facilities for youth and adult sports, including one baseball and two softball fields, five soccer fields, and six tennis courts. The complex is also located near Downtown Roanoke and the Roanoke River Greenway.
Spectrum Sports Academy
Sports: basketball, volleyball, soccer, lacrosse, football
Spectrum Sports Academy is known for its elite sports training facilities. It can also accommodate various sports events. It features six hardwood basketball courts, 10 hardwood volleyball courts, baseball/softball batting cage and pitching lanes with state of the art pitching simulators, Indoor field turf training area suitable for soccer, lacrosse, baseball, softball and football training.
Green Hill Park
Sports: Baseball, softball, football, soccer, running, horseback riding
One of the larger parks in Roanoke County, Green Hill Park caters to a wide variety of activities. The park features athletic fields, baseball/softball diamonds, football and soccer fields. It hosts many of the region’s large special events and athletic tournaments. The Roanoke River Greenway, a paved 10-foot-wide walking path, runs through the park and offers a great location for running events. Green Hill is also home to a top notch 20-acre equestrian center.
Botetourt Sports Complex
Sports: Softball, baseball
The Botetourt Sports Complex is located within the 125-acre Greenfield Recreation Park which features a cross-country course, soccer fields and a hiking trail. The Botetourt Sports Complex is a state-of-the-art facility that features four championship level softball and youth baseball fields, all with beautiful views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The fields are arranged around a central, three-story tower with space for tournament operations, scorekeeping, concessions and restrooms. The complex also features a state-of-the-art lighting system, portable fencing for flexibility at any distance, ample spectator seating for all fields, dugouts with restrooms and water fountains, on-site concessions, three-level tower for tournament operations, playground for children, electronic scoreboards, and a half-mile paved walking track surrounding the fields.
How Do I Get to Virginia’s Blue Ridge?
Roanoke Valley in Virginia’s Blue Ridge is centrally located on the East Coast, making it easy to get to from pretty much anywhere in the country.
By Plane: The area is served by Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport, which offers direct flights to eight international hubs with one-stop service to over 70 international cities and over 400 domestic destinations. The airport is located less than five miles of downtown Roanoke and within a couple miles of many accommodations and attractions.
By Car: Roanoke Valley is within a four-hour drive of many metropolitan areas on the East Coast, and is easily accessed through Interstate 81, US 220 and the Blue Ridge Parkway.
If you’re ready for a worry-free sports planning experience, schedule your next tournament in Virginia’s Blue Ridge.