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March 2014

More Than 2200 Triathletes to Compete in IRONMAN 70.3 Florida Next Week

Haines City, FL (April 2, 2014) – Competitors from 41 States and from countries as far away as Germany and Argentina will descend on Central Florida to test their athletic abilities, stamina and competitive drive on Sunday, April 13 on the 70.3 mile swimming, running and cycling course. Triathletes from a number of tri-clubs from the Tampa, St. Petersburg, Orlando and Miami areas will also compete in IRONMAN 70.3 Florida. While the more than 2200 adult athletes will be focused on the competition and the challenge provided by the course, area residents will be able to take in the IRONMAN experience on a much more leisurely pace. Lake Eva Park in Haines City will host three full days of activities that will appeal to the entire family, April 11-13. ...more

Polk County’s Tourism Office to Host Events to Celebrate National Tourism Week

Auburndale, FL (April 2, 2014) – Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing (PCTSM) will celebrate National Tourism Week with a number of activities the week of May 5 – 9, 2014. The first full week of May is recognized annually as National Travel and Tourism Week. Plans are still in progress so PCTSM wants tourism officials and residents to make note of these dates, to join in on the public festivities. Polk’s theme for this year’s celebration is “We Are Tourism” as PCTSM will honor and highlight those that make a great experience for visitors to Polk County. PCTSM staff members will visit locations across Polk County, in a tourism caravan, visiting different tourism and hospitality venues daily, to recognize the contributions of the front-line travel industry personnel who interact with visitors on a daily basis. PCTSM will host a Tourism Rally for Polk County Tourism Employees and Dignitaries at Polk Outpost 27 (Polk County’s official visitor information center) in Davenport on National Travel Rally Day, Tuesday, May 6, from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Staff from PCTSM and The Ledger Media Group will also be presenting several of the Ledger’s 2014 “Golden Plate Awards” in person at the winner’s locations, as part of the caravan. ...more

February 2014

Tourism Tax Collections Continue Double Digit Increases

Auburndale, FL (February 28, 2014) – With one-third of the fiscal year completed, 2013-14 is shaping up to be a record year for Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing. January 2014 tourism tax collections increased 15% over January 2013 collections, continuing a three-month trend of double-digit revenue gains when compared to 2012-13 fiscal year tourism tax collections. November and December revenue collections increased 10% from 2012 levels, with October 2013 being the only month to fall just shy of the double-digit level, posting a 9% revenue increase from the same period a year ago. Four months into the fiscal year tourism tax revenues reflect an 11% increase over last year’s results, and currently stand 6.67% above the revenues collected in the record setting year of 2007-08. ...more

December 2013

Collegiate Women’s Rugby National Championships Contested in Polk County this Weekend

Auburndale, Fla. (December 3, 2013) – The American Collegiate Rugby Association (ACRA) is hosting its inaugural championship at the Lake Myrtle Sports Park in Auburndale. Eight teams from across the country have qualified to face-off for the Division I and Division II National Championships. The Division I and Division II semi-final games will take place Saturday, December 7 with the Division I and Division II National Championship games being played on Sunday, December 8. ...more

July 2013

Rebel Spring Games Signs Long Term Agreement with Central Florida’s Polk County Sports Marketing

Auburndale, Fla. (July 15, 2013) – Central Florida’s Polk County Sports marketing announced today that it has come to a long-term agreement with the Rebel Spring Games organization to hold collegiate softball spring training games in Polk County beginning in March of 2014. More than 110 NCAA Division I, II, and III softball teams are expected to participate each spring with more than 500 games being held during the month-long series of games. The Auburndale Softball Complex and Winter Haven’s DiamondPlex will host all of the games played in the 2014 event, with the hopes of expanding into NAIA and Junior College division to increase the number of teams and facilities used as the event grows. ...more

April 2013

Florida’s Sunshine State Games Return To Polk County

Florida’s Sunshine State Games presents the Polk County Festival will host approximately 1,500 amateur athletes from throughout Florida competing in eight sports (Canoe/Kayak, Judo, Karate, Racquetball, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Weightlifting and Wrestling). Five of the sports (Judo, Karate, Taekwondo, Weightlifting and Wrestling) will take place at The Lakeland Center. This is seventh consecutive year Polk County has hosted a Sunshine State Games Festival. Since 2007, more than 21,000 amateur athletes have been in competition in Sunshine State Games events in Polk County. ...more

April 2013

IRONMAN 70.3 Florida Set to Welcome 2500 Triathletes to Polk County Event

Haines City, FL (April 30, 2013) – Competitors from 41 States and from countries as far away as Germany and Argentina will descend on Polk County to test their athletic abilities, stamina and competitive drive this Sunday on the 70.3 mile swimming, running and cycling course. While the more than 200 adult athletes will be focused on the competition and the challenge provided by the course, area residents will be able to take in the IRONMAN experience on a much more leisurely pace. Lake Eva Park in Haines City will host three full days of activities that will appeal to the entire family, May 17-19. ...more

February 2013

Central Florida Set to Host the 75th Running of the Orange Cup Regatta

Auburndale, Fla. (February 18, 2013) – The top power boat drivers representing 25 different states will descend upon Lakeland’s Lake Hollingsworth for the 75th running of the Orange Cup Regatta March 1-3. Each year the Orange Cup Regatta draws some of the top powerboat racers in the United States due to Lake Hollingsworth’s reputation as the “Lake of Records” on the powerboat circuit, but this year’s event is sure to draw even larger fields to celebrate the event’s 75th anniversary. ...more

February 2013

RussMatt Central Florida Invitational Set to Begin Play

Auburndale, Fla. (February 12, 2013) – Play in the 2013 RussMatt Central Florida Invitational is set to begin on Monday, February 18, as Warner University will open play by facing Brandeis University from Massachusetts. More than 270 NAIA, Junior College, Division I, II and III colleges and university baseball teams will participate in the annual college Spring Training program taking place from February 18 to April 4 on baseball fields throughout Polk County. While Auburndale’s Lake Myrtle Sports Park and Winter Haven’s Chain of Lakes Park will host the majority of the 946 games scheduled, other facilities such as Henley Field, Southeastern University, Webber International University and a number of high school baseball complexes will see action during the event’s seven week schedule of games and practices. ...more

January 2013

Central Florida to Host IPSC World Shoot XVII

Auburndale, Fla. (January 9, 2013) – The International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) Handgun World Shoot XVII may still be more than 20 months away, but preparations are well underway to host competitors from around the world October 7-19, 2014. The Handgun World Shoot is the largest event conducted by the IPSC and only occurs every three years. The most recent World Shoot event, World Shoot XVI, was held in Rhodes, Greece and previous World Shoot events were held in Indonesia, Ecuador, South Africa and Brazil. ...more

September 2012

Polk County to Host 2013 Bike Florida Spring Tour

Auburndale, Fla. (September 11, 2012) – For the first time in its 19 year history the Bike Florida Spring Tour will hold its week-long bicycle tour in Polk County. The seven day event will be held March 22-29, 2013 and will bring more than 900 bicyclists from around the United States and Canada to Polk County to experience the region’s natural beauty, restaurants, cultural attractions and local events. The 2013 Bike Florida Spring Tour has been titled the “Orange Blossom Special” and throughout the week cyclists will have the opportunity to ride more than 450 miles during the event. ...more

August 2012

Polk County Visitor Center Invites Attractions to Fall Festival

Davenport, FL (August 14, 2012) – Polk County’s official visitor information center, Polk Outpost 27, will help visitors welcome the fall season this year with its sixth annual Fall Festival on Saturday, October 27 from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This year we would like to highlight our area attractions at the festival, which is attended by 1,000 visitors each year. We are inviting LEGOLAND Florida, Bok Tower Gardens, Fantasy of Flight, Explorations V, Circle B Bar Reserve, Safari Wilderness, Polk County Parks and Recreation, The Lakeland Flying Tigers, Davidson’s of Dundee, Webb’s Citrus Candy Factory, McDonald’s, 97 Country, and Radio Disney to be a part of the festivities. ...more

July 2012

PCTSM Sales and Events Manager Recognized as a Future Leader in the Meetings and Events Industry

AUBURNDALE (July 2012) – Marc Zimmerman, Sales & Events Manager for Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing (PCTSM), has been selected as a member of Connect Magazine’s second annual “40 Under 40: Future Leaders in the Meetings Industry.” Members on the list, which identifies up-and-coming young professionals in the meetings and events industry, are selected from a pool of candidates nominated by planners, hoteliers and destination partners throughout the country. ...more

June 2012

Visit Central Florida’s Tourism Sales & Marketing Manager Named to National “Forty for the Future” List

ATLANTA, Ga. (June 2012) – Visit Central Florida’s Kris Keprios has been selected as part of the inaugural group of young professionals from across the country for the Southeast Tourism Society’s first class of “Forty for the Future: Travel’s Leading Talent.” The Southeast Tourism Society (STS), an Atlanta-based professional association in the tourism industry, organized the program which will be an annual recognition. ...more

June 5, 2012

Polk County All Sports Awards and Hall of Fame Evening Set for June 26 at the Lakeland Center

Lakeland, Fla. (June 4, 2012) — The Lakeland Center’s Sikes Hall will be the center of attention for the Polk County sports community on June 26 for the 11th annual Polk County All Sports Awards (PCASA). The annual tradition of honoring athletes from Polk County for their excellence and achievements on and off the playing field will be held at 6:15 p.m. with the evening’s festivities being emceed by local sports personalities. ...more

May 7, 2012

Three Polk County municipalities nominated for the Ultimate Fishing Town

Lakeland, FL (May 7, 2012) – With the more than 550 lakes dotting the county, hundreds of anglers competing in fishing tournaments every weekend and the area being recognized as the Largemouth Bass Capital of the World, it’s only fitting that Polk County would also be home to the Ultimate Fishing Town. ...more

Public Relations Staff

Al Snow
Central Florida Sports Marketing

Kelly Rote
Visit Central Florida

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