Rockford Region Sports
RACVB NATIONAL SPORTS TOURISM IMPACT
A five-time Sports Events & Tourism Association (SportsETA) national award-winner since 2016, RACVB has built the Rockford region as a sports destination by driving tourism economic impact, brand awareness, industry acclaim, and local impact through the sports tourism segment. During 2019, RACVB experienced another banner year as its sales team booked and/or serviced 127 events that yielded $53,363,430 in visitor-generated economic impact for Winnebago County. Beyond sales and servicing management and execution of competitive national bid processes and operations efforts, the Bureau also leveraged comprehensive sports marketing and public relations programs that yielded 10,556 media clips, $6,814,924 in average ad value, 858,492,516 impressions tied to RACVB's sports tourism outreach, and four premier locally produced events in 2019.
RACVB Wins Two More SportsETA Awards!
- Read the official release HERE
- Watch the SportsETA interview HERE
- View the submission documents for 2020 SportsETA Event Marketing Campaign of the Year HERE
- View the submission documents for 2020 SportsETA Locally Created Event of the Year HERE
RACVB SportsETA National Awards
- 2016 SportsETA Sports Tourism Organization of the Year
- 2018 SportsETA Sports Tourism Organization of the Year
- 2019 SportsETA Destination Branding & Marketing Campaign of the Year
- 2020 SportsETA Event Marketing Campaign of the Year
- 2020 SportsETA Locally Created Event of the Year
RECENT RACVB BOOKED & HOSTED EVENTS
- 2021-23 National Junior College Athletic Association Men's Basketball National Championship | Rockford, IL
- 2021-22 USA Wrestling 16U National Dual Championships | Loves Park, IL
- 2021 Netlynx Mizuno Volleyball Showcase | Loves Park, IL & Rockford, IL
- 2021 JUNK Mid-American Lacrosse Festival | Loves Park, IL
- 2021 Illinois Bowling Association State Tournament | Loves Park, IL & Rockford, IL
- 2020-21 USA Baseball National Team Identification Series | Loves Park, IL
- 2020 North American Fastpitch Association Men's World Series | Beloit, WI & Rockford, IL
- 2019-21 U.S. Quad Rugby Association National Championships | Rockford, IL
- 2018-21 National Middle School Basketball State Championships | Rockford, IL
- 2018-21 AAU Rockin Rockford Volleyball | Rockford, IL & Machesney Park, IL
- 2016-21 National Football Association 7v7 Midwest Regional | Loves Park, IL
- 2015-21 NXT Sports Fall Lacrosse Classic | Loves Park, IL
- 2013-21 Rock River Robotics Off-season Competition | Rockford, IL
- 1986-2021 USA BMX Midwest Nationals | Rockford, IL
- 2018, 2020 National Junior College Athletic Association Women's Basketball Championship | Rockford, IL
- 2016-20 Tough Mudder Chicago | Rockford, IL
- 2016, 2020 National Dart Association Regional | Rockford, IL
- 2019 ITTF North American Olympic Table Tennis Trials | Rockford, IL
- 2019 National Softball Association World Series | Beloit, WI, Davis Junction, IL, Loves Park, IL, & Rockford, IL
- 2018 AAU Girls Basketball Sixth Grade National Championships | Rockford, IL
- 2018 National Junior College Athletic Association Women's Soccer Championship | Loves Park, IL & Rockford, IL
- 2017-18 Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association JUNK Brands Midwest Lacrosse Cup | Loves Park, IL
- 2015, 2018 USA Ultimate Division III College Championships | Loves Park, IL
- 2017 Premier SuperCopa | Loves Park, IL
- 2017 U.S. Synchronized Skating National Championships | Rockford, IL
- 2017 Illinois Bowling Association Men's State Tournament | Rockford, IL
- 2016 USA Ultimate National Championships | Loves Park, IL
- 2015-16 USA Rugby Midwest Challenge Cup | Loves Park, IL
- 10+-Year Host of USA Water Ski/NSSA Division I Show Ski Nationals | Loves Park, IL
- 2003-25 Illinois Kids Wrestling Federation State Finals | Rockford, IL
- 1993-2021 Illinois High School Association Girls Bowling State Finals | Rockford, IL
In addition to those listed above, RACVB would like to also highlight these regional and national tourism planners who continue to partner with us in bringing impact and awareness to the Rockford region through sports tourism events: 360 Sports Events (USA Gymnastics, AAU Gymnastics, National Gymnastics Association), All-In Volleyball (NJCAA Volleyball), American Amateur Baseball Congress, American Cornhole Organization, Baseball Players Association, Big Ten Universities Rugby, Game Day USA, Illinois Elementary School Association, Jerrad Hardin Fastpitch, Junior Sports Association, JP Sports, National Collegiate Table Tennis Association, Primetime Sports, Professional Disc Golf Association, Rugby Illinois, United States Bowling Congress, United States Specialty Sports Association, U.S. Junior Nationals Girls Basketball, USA Table Tennis, USA Volleyball.
There are many other event operators and national governing bodies we continue to work with to grow the sports tourism segment, which remains a major driver of our local economy. Special thanks to all of our local venue partners, clubs, municipalities, hospitality professionals and residents who help us bring much-needed, visitor-generated revenue to our regional economy!
Our Region Builds Champions
Rockford has been a pioneering sports town since the mid-1980s, when it opened its first of many multi-purpose sports complexes. Decade after decade, we’ve set the standard for hosting sports tournaments with our unparalleled venues, accessibility and drive market, and the tourism and hospitality professionals that proudly call the region home. Thanks to its marketing and sales results and industry leadership, the Rockford Area CVB has garnered five national awards since 2016, created a growing variety of locally-produced events and driven millions in economic impact to the region from booked and hosted sports tourism events.
Our facilities portfolio includes the state-of-the-art UW Health Sports Factory (UWHSF) designed for championship caliber basketball, volleyball and much more with its 105,000 square feet of competition space. The Sports Factory, as its known by residents and visitors, is located just across the Rock River--a national events venue in its own right--from the 160-room Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront that opened in 2020 and the 7,500-seat BMO Harris Bank Center.
Head across town to Loves Park where you'll find Mercyhealth Sportscore Two, which features 26 outdoor fields--including six with turf and lights for night games. The venue also comes equipped with the 2,500-seat Wedgbury Stadium and the 200,000+ square foot Indoor Sports Center. The complex remains a regular site of national soccer, baseball, softball, Ultimate, rugby, football, lacrosse and wrestling events. Need more fields of play? Mercyhealth Sportscore One, the facility that opened in the mid-1980s to jumpstart the region's entry in sports tourism, offers 17 natural grass soccer fields and eight baseball/softball diamonds in northwest Rockford.
Need more world-class sports venues? Check out the one-of-a-kind West Rock Wake Park and take a ride around the cables at historic Levings Park. Additional unique venues in the Rockford region include the wide-body Rock River for rowing, skiing and other water sports and region-wide high school field houses, including the Auburn High School's field house that features full indoor track and field capabilities that allows it to host national meets.
Event Grant Application
The RACVB Grant Program is designed to assist host organizations in attracting events or group sports events which will generate significant out-of-area economic impact for the Rockford region.
Click here to download the application.