Birmingham city leaders and NCAA officials made a big announcement about an event that's coming to the Magic City this winter.
The Division II National Championships Festival will be held in Birmingham in March 2013. The festival features the national championships in swimming, diving, wrestling, and track and field for all of the NCAA Division II schools.
That will mean more than 1,500 athletes and their families coming to town for more than a week, and the convention and visitors bureau is projecting a more than $11 million economic impact on the Birmingham metro area.
NCAA officials today said the Crossplex is the perfect facility to host these championships because it has a world-class pool and indoor track under one roof, and with the new Westin hotel downtown projected to be open by the time the competition starts, Birmingham has everything the NCAA was looking for.
"This is far and away the best thing that I've seen. It's the right size, it's the right configuration. And most importantly, if you are a fan from any institution, and you have swimmers, and wrestlers, and track and field participants, you can see it all, in one place at one time," Nathan Salant Gulf South Conference Commissioner said Thursday.
Birmingham has a bid out for Division I events and is competing with other cities to host DI competitions. City leaders should know in early November if Birmingham has won the bid.
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