TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Leon County announced plans to host seven major cross-country events this fall at the County’s award-winning Apalachee Regional Park on Monday.
The events are anticipated to bring over 35,000 visitors to Leon County and result in $10 million in direct spending and include two national championships in the fall of 2021.
“Following the County’s recent investments in the Apalachee Regional Park, we look forward to hosting thousands of athletes, coaches and visitors from all over the country,” said Rick Minor, the Leon County Commission Chairman. “Leon County is known across the region and the nation as a cross country sports destination, and this upcoming fall line-up proves we have the ability to host the best-of-the-best.”
Leon County’s Apalachee Regional Park is a multi-use venue that includes one of the nation’s few sites designed specifically for cross-country running. It features various course and distance options through rolling hills, lowlands and pine forests, the park can host thousands of runners and visitors at some of the nation’s largest sporting events.
The park recently completed a $2 million enhancement project which included the addition of a multi-purpose building with a restroom facility, sidewalk, stage, landscaping, wildlife viewing areas and a permanent finish line structure.
“Apalachee Regional Park is a great example of a shared vision and successful partnership between Leon County, FSU Athletics and Gulf Winds Track Club,” said Leon County Administrator Vincent S. Long. “Having achieved national acclaim, the venue sets the standard for cross country competitions anywhere. And this state-of-the-art facility is available year-round to residents and visitors alike, thanks to the teamwork of the County and our many community partners.”
Leon County will welcome the NCAA Cross-Country Division I National Championships to Florida for the first time in the race’s 83-year history.
FSU will serve as the host institution for the NCAA Pre-Nationals on Oct. 15, 2021, and the National Championship meet scheduled for Nov. 20, 2021. This is the first NCAA national championship event held in Leon County since the women’s tennis event in 1996.
“We’re excited for the upcoming fall home cross-country schedule,” said Bob Braman, FSUs head cross-country coach. “The FSU Open will be an early season preview meet, while the pre-national meet will be a late-season, high-caliber meet where teams from all over the country will visit Tallahassee to preview our world-class course before nationals.”
“We continue to see tremendous growth in the economic impact and visibility that cross-country events bring to the county,” said Kerri L. Post, the director of Leon County Division of Tourism. “The recent capital improvements enhance the visitor experience for thousands of athletes, coaches and spectators that visit from all over the country and bring significant economic benefits to the County.”
2021 Upcoming Cross-Country Meets at ARP:
|Sept. 17||FSU XC Open|
|Oct. 15||FSU XC Invite/Pre-Nationals|
|Oct. 15-16||FSU XC Invite/Pre-State Meet|
|Oct. 29||NJCAA Region 8 Championships|
|Nov. 12||FHSAA [lnks.gd] State Cross-Country Championships|
|Nov. 20||NCAA [lnks.gd] Men & Women’s Cross-Country Division I National Championships|
|Dec. 11||USATF Club Cross-Country National Championships|
For more information contact Scott Lindeman, Marketing Communications Director, Leon County Tourism/Visit Tallahassee at (850) 606-2322 office or Scott.Lindeman@VisitTallahassee.com.