Online Staff Report
The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (RACVB) is welcoming the Rockford Raptors Soccer Club Puma Cup to the Rockford region for a 12th consecutive year.
The Puma College Showcase and Tournament will take place Friday-Sunday, April 4-6. The Puma Champions Cup will take place Friday-Sunday, April 11-13. Both tournaments will be played at Sportscore One and Two.
As the largest soccer tournament held in the Rockford area, Puma Cup showcases nearly 600 teams traveling from across the Midwest, including international visitors from Canada. The tournament brings an estimated 20,000 attendees to the area with a projected economic impact of $1.4 million.
The Puma College Showcase and Tournament includes 203 teams of 13- to 19-year-old athletes in men’s and women’s divisions. The high level of competition attracts approximately 50 college coaches to scout and recruit players. The Puma Champions Cup is a competition for 387 teams of mid- to lower-level boys’ and girls’ teams in the 8 to 15 age range.
RACVB President/CEO John Groh said: “Rockford has proven to be a quality destination for soccer tournaments like Puma Cup. Our strong reputation as a leader in amateur sports keeps us top of mind when organizers are deciding where to host their tournament. It’s crucial that we continue to invest in our sports tourism product to retain our place as the amateur sports capital of the Midwest. Sports tourism is a key driver of our local economy and provides long-term results that benefit the entire region.”
A complete schedule, including start times for specific games, can be found at rockfordraptors.org. Admission is free for spectators.
Puma Champions Cup Tournament Director Frank Mateus said: “The Rockford Raptors and our families are extremely excited to be able to host two great weekends of soccer right here in our hometown. We are fortunate to have the support of the cities of Rockford and Loves Park. The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Rockford Park District have taken these two weekend tournaments as their own, which has been a key factor in the successful planning process. We have been running this event for a long time, and we want to thank all of the community partners within the Rockford region for being right there with us.”
Posted April 2, 2014