New NSC facility will “test the waters” for a larger future presence in court sports
Blaine, Minn. (April 4, 2018) – The National Sports Center (NSC) in Blaine, Minnesota has announced firm plans to expand into court sports, as soon as May of 2018. The NSC will install two portable hardwood courts in the Sport Expo Center. The courts will be able to accommodate basketball (2 courts) or volleyball (3 courts.) The courts can also be arranged in a center-court configuration with spectator seating.
Here is an artists vision of what the new basketball and volleyball courts will look like inside the Sport Expo Center.
“Basketball and volleyball are both on a steep growth curve, especially at the youth ages,” said George Ellis, the NSC’s staff member charged with developing court sports programming. “At some point in the future, the NSC may develop a larger multi-court facility on our campus, and these new courts are a way to test the waters and assess the demand for court rental time and participation in NSC programs such as leagues and tournaments.”
“We will be focusing on three lines of business to start,” explained Ellis, “community rentals, open gym time, and an adult basketball league, and development programs in the future. We will also be hosting the Star of the North Games adult basketball tournament on June 22-24. Our research shows there is a demand for basketball and volleyball court time year-around, which obviously is attractive for us from a business standpoint.”
The new beech-wood courts have been ordered from Junckers Hardwood in Denmark, and are scheduled to arrive on April 23. After installation, the courts should be ready for play in early May.
The $300,000 project will be financed internally by the NSC, with projected revenue from court rental and registration fees projected to cover the debt service.
Junckers is a well-known manufacturer of hardwood sports courts, and has been selected as the official court supplier for many FIBA (International Basketball Federation) events. According to Junckers promotional information, “Beech is one of Europe’s most common hardwood species, has excellent strength properties, a uniform structure with white to reddish heartwood and the red-brown grain pattern with a classic appearance.” In addition to sports floors, Junckers beech floors are also used for commercial floors in museums and public buildings, and even for ship decking.
The courts will be delivered in 2-foot by 6-foot pieces, 1,300 pieces in all. The NSC operations staff projects that it will take four to five hours to install or remove the courts, each time that is done. The long-term plan is to periodically remove the courts for major events in the Sport Expo Center, such as the KTIS Joyful Noise Music Festival and Schwan’s USA CUP, and then re-install the courts after those events conclude. The courts will be installed on top of the Expo Center’s concrete floor, with a pad between the concrete and the wood court surface.
The NSC is installing NBA-style portable backboards, automated motorized overhead volleyball nets, scoreboards and shot clocks.
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