LANCASTER – This past Saturday and Sunday, (Feb. 9 & 10), the City of Lancaster hosted the California Soccer Association – South (Cal South) State Cup soccer tournament at the James C. Gilley Lancaster National Soccer Center (LNSC), drawing thousands of attendees.
“Many people don’t realize that these events are much more than local soccer games,” said Mayor R. Rex Parris. “Such tournaments draw players, referees, and coaches, from throughout California, along with their friends and family members. The resulting increase in tourism in the Antelope Valley has a considerable economic impact on our City’s hotels, restaurants and other businesses.”
Despite the cold weather, 256 youth soccer teams from as far away as San Luis Obispo and San Diego competed in the weekend tournament, which ran from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on both days. Approximately 8,000 people attended the tournament, resulting in an estimated $700,000 in local economic impact.
“Last weekend’s tournament was the second of as many as twelve Cal South tournaments we will host at the Lancaster National Soccer Center this year,” remarked Parks, Recreation, and Arts Director Ronda Perez. “Over the course of the year, the economic impact generated from these soccer tournaments adds up considerably. In fact, during the last fiscal year, tournaments hosted at LNSC brought an estimated 63,000 people and nearly $6.2 million in economic impact to the Lancaster community.”
Since 2004, this nationally-renowned facility has attracted approximately 500,000 people for an estimated impact of $55.9 million. The center regularly plays host to regional, state and national tournaments for a variety of organizations, including the US Youth Soccer Far West Regional Championship, California Youth Soccer Association (Cal South) State and National Cup, the US Youth Soccer Association, and the American Youth Soccer Association (AYSO).
In addition to tournaments, LNSC serves as a venue for more than 4,000 local youth who regularly practice and play at the complex. Local organizations who have utilized the center include AYSO, Lancaster United Soccer League, Antelope Soccer League, High Desert Men’s Soccer League, and a variety of club, elementary, middle school and high school teams. Between tournaments and local play, the complex is in use approximately 48 weekends of each year.
For more information, call the City’s Parks, Recreation and Arts department at (661) 723- 6077 or visit http://www.lancastersoccercenter.com.
(Information via press release from the city of Lancaster.)