Danville is hiring a firm to develop a sports tourism strategic marketing plan for the city.

A request for proposals seeking bids from potential contractors was posted Jan. 13.

“The city of Danville and Pittsylvania County is in the process of creating a new tourism program,” said Lisa Meriwether, tourism manager for the city of Danville. “There is a high interest in developing and promoting tourism through sports.”

Sports tourism is an integral part of the economy, locally and nationally, Meriwether added. Visitors to sporting events spend money in localities that host them, generating tax revenue and pumping dollars into their economies.

“Travelers attending sports tournaments, races and other events — either as spectators or participants — generate significant economic benefits to households, businesses and governments alike and represent a critical driver of the overall economy,” Meriwether said.

The city enters into an agreement with a firm to come up with the strategic plan, which will identify, grow, develop and service regional sports tourism activities, Meriwether said.

“The plan should provide actionable steps for developing sports tourism for the city of Danville and Pittsylvania County and highlight ways to improve existing facilities, utilize city and county assets to their best potential, identify areas to consider, develop methods for working with our municipalities as a destination, identify potential funding sources and provide event ideas and contacts for implementing the plan,” she said.

Local officials hope a study/strategic plan will give them a better idea of which sports and what types of facilities would be a good fit for the region.

As for current sporting events being hosted in the city and county, officials believe understanding the impact of those events and existing assets will enable Danville and Pittsylvania County to leverage them to become a sports tourism destination, Meriwether said.

Bids for the strategic plan were due at 5 p.m. Friday and will be opened by the city’s procurement office Monday. Officials will know then who submitted them.


Article by Register and Bee