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Perfect Game taking off as baseball's 'NFL Combine'
News-Press
Professional baseball's equivalent to the NFL Combine has about as many players and scouts on hand for it but a fraction of media coverage, national exposure and spectator interest. The six-day Perfect Game National Showcase is takes place, in low-key fashion, at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers, Florida. "It would almost be impossible to get all of the high school players and all of the college players together," said Kirk Gardner, the director of the showcase. "It's just impossible. So this is the closest thing to the NFL Combine."
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Attitudes sometimes need adjusting
NASC
As much as we focus on youth sports events and facilities, it's good to, every once in a while, talk about the players themselves who participate in athletics, sometimes year-round. A recent article on theseason.gc.com by Tori Benavidez, a former softball player at Sam Houston State, now an associate softball coach there, brings that focus back to the players.
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Beach volleyball tournament helps spike sports tourism in Florida
WTSP-TV
Florida's Bay Area is not just about beaches and amusement parks, it's becoming a destination for amateur and professional sporting events. Top beach volleyball athletes and their fans have taken over Spa Beach in downtown St. Petersburg for a week-long tournament. While there's a lot at stake for players, it's businesses are the ones who are scoring big.
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Hundreds of veterans to participate in National Veterans Wheelchair Games
Dallas Sports Commission
More than 600 of America's best wheelchair athletes, all disabled U.S. military veterans, are arriving in Dallas for the 35th National Veterans Wheelchair Games. The Wheelchair Games is occurring this year during the Department of Veterans Affairs' "Summer of Service," an initiative designed to build upon existing partnerships to grow the number of individuals and organizations serving Veterans in their communities.
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One-of-a-kind open water swim plunges into Delaware
The News Journal
Instead of hopping onto the Cape May-Lewes Ferry to take a ride to either shore, swimmers and adrenaline seekers will plunge 12 feet into Lewes, Delaware's Harbor of Refuge. It's the type of scene that Steve Del Monte, founder and CEO of DelMoSports, and Gov. Jack Markell think will make the inaugural Escape from Lewes Open Water Swim Classic a one-of-a-kind event.
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USA Gymnastics awards 2016 USA Gymnastics Championships to Rhode Island
USA Gymnastics
USA Gymnastics has awarded the 2016 USA Gymnastics Championships, which showcases more than 1,800 of the country's best gymnasts in acrobatic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics and trampoline and tumbling, to Providence, Rhode Island. Scheduled for June 8-13, Junior Olympic competition will be staged at the Rhode Island Convention Center for the entire six days. The junior and senior elite competition will be held at Dunkin' Donuts Center from June 10-12.
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Potential room tax increase to help fund new Pittsburgh sports commission
Pittsburgh Business Times
VisitPittsburgh is lobbying Pittsburgh's local hospitality industry to push for a new travel promotion fee, a tax of 1.25 percent on the rooms paid by overnight guests at hotels within Allegheny County that would help fund a new Pittsburgh Sports Commission and the Pittsburgh Film Office, among other initiatives.
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Cancer among soccer players prompts California city to pay extra for alternative artificial turf
Press-Telegram
Long Beach, California, may join other cities and organizations in spurning artificial turf fields cushioned with crumbs of recycled tires because of concerns about the potential health effects they could have on children. The Parks and Recreation Commission decided recently to recommend the use of natural fiber materials as the standard infill for all future synthetic field projects in the city.
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McDonald's All-American Game to remain in Chicago for 2016
USA Today
The McDonald's All-American Game will remain in Chicago for 2016 after McDonald's and the United Center agreed to an exercise an option to keep the annual basketball showcase in the town for a sixth consecutive year. A decision on the location and venue for later games has not been made, according to a news release announcing the 2016 game.
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Poor fitness is a bigger threat to child health than obesity
The Conversation
The least fit 10-year-old English child from a class of 30 in 1998 would be one of the five fittest children in the same class tested today. These are the worrying findings of a new piece of research that has crystallized the need to focus on a sharp decline in fitness levels, not obesity, when it comes to improving children's health.
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They don't forgo the fungo in college baseball
The New York Times
If you have attended a Major League Baseball game in the last 15 years, pregame infield practice, known simply as infield, may be unfamiliar. All but abandoned by the early 2000s, the ritual lives on at the CWS and at college stadiums all over the country. In the right hands, it is beautiful to watch.
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Youth sports draw influx of cash to Arkansas
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Little Rock, Arkansas is cashing in on what has become a national $7 billion industry — youth sports. In the past three years, people traveling for youth sports have accounted for 52 percent to 55 percent of all booked hotel rooms in Little Rock, said David Russell, director of sports sales for the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau.
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The challenges of providing public space with private funds
The Dirt
In an age of ample private wealth and an increasingly constrained public sector, a number of American cities have become dependent on privately funded conservancies to maintain and refurbish their public parks. A new report by Peter Harnik, Hon. ASLA, and Abby Martin from The Trust for Public Land's Center for City Park Excellence explores the rise of such city park conservancies — private organizations that use donations to rebuild, renovate, and, in some cases, maintain some of the most iconic parks in the country. Interspersed with examples from 41 conservancy organizations that have a collective experience record of nearly 750 years, the study serves as a how-to guide for building successful relationships between city governments and urban park conservancies.
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Youth sports: Too much of a good thing?
WFMZ-TV
Doctors say sports injuries that require surgery and long recovery periods are becoming more common in younger athletes as they focus on playing a single sport year-round. "They're starting to specialize at younger and younger ages, so their bodies aren't necessarily getting the rest that they need," said Dr. Brian Forsythe, orthopedic surgeon at Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush. About half of sports injuries in kids and teens are from overuse.
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Study: How to get students to college football games
The Arizona Republic
For the past several years, college athletics administrators and football coaches have lamented the decline of student attendance. Everything from a lack of internet access in stadiums to ticket prices to quality of opponents had been posited as reasons even the biggest football schools had seen their attendance decline. Now those schools will have some answers.
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Will genetic cyber-athletes come to dominate sports?
Genetic Literacy Project
It is sport's doomsday scenario: a new generation of bioengineered performance-enhancing agents that can transform also-rans into gold medalists. Imagine athletes injecting artificial genes right into their muscles — a virtually undetectable act that would give them the sinewy muscles of a cougar, or endurance like that of an antelope. But this is not the science fiction of Hollywood; this is the coming reality in sports, and it is calling into question cherished beliefs about what is "natural" and "unnatural," fair and unfair, in the world of elite athletics.
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