Northstar Meetings Group and the National Council of Youth Sports have reached a multi-year extension that will allow NCYS to co-locate a board meeting and membership reception at the TEAMS Conference & Expo — the world’s largest gathering for the sports-event industry — starting with TEAMS ’23 in The Palm Beaches of Florida, October 2–5. As part of the agreement, National Youth Sports Week will also coincide with the week of TEAMS ’23, and NCYS leadership will be included in education related to youth sports at the conference through TEAMS ’25.
The deal is an extension on an agreement that began with TEAMS ’22, where NCYS hosted a reception for its members and TEAMS helped promote National Youth Sports Week, which also coincided with the conference. The combined timing of National Youth Sports Week highlights the importance of youth sports with NCYS uniquely positioned to make a difference for young people, their families and youth sports organizations. The organization’s membership serves 60 million youth registered in organized sports programs.
NCYS members include national community-based organizations, local unaffiliated community-based organizations, national governing bodies, parks and recreation departments, and destination marketing organizations. Member organizations have a presence in local communities in all 50 states and U.S. territories.
“We are thrilled to continue our relationship with the National Council of Youth Sports and expand its presence at TEAMS in the years to come,” said Jason Gewirtz, executive editor and publisher of SportsTravel and vice president of the Sports Division for Northstar Meetings Group, which organizes the TEAMS Conference & Expo. “Youth sports play a vital role in the sports-events industry not just for economic development but more importantly to keep the next generation active and engaged. TEAMS provides the perfect platform to help elevate the importance of youth sports now and in the future and the National Council of Youth Sports is a perfect partner to make that happen.”
“We are excited to partner with TEAMS and to provide additional educational and networking benefits to our member organizations and to help them facilitate meetings with sports commissions and convention bureaus,” said Wayne B. Moss, NCYS executive director. “We’re also delighted that aligning National Youth Sports Week with TEAMS is a great way to support the advancement of youth sports by connecting many of the critical stakeholders in the youth sports community.”
During National Youth Sports Week, which has been celebrated along with National Youth Sports Day since 2013, NCYS will celebrate youth sports and address concerns in the space by bringing awareness, driving engagement and delivering a call to action to help address issues involving youth sports. Highlights of the week nationwide include a Pep Rally Day, Coaches Day, Health and Wellness Day, Safety Day, Spirit Wear Day and Play Day that will feature games, practices, free play and NGBs providing clinics to sample their sports.
For more than 40 years, the extensive reach of NCYS has catalyzed major changes in the youth sports landscape. That work has included a strategic, industry-wide initiative to protect the interests of youth through criminal background checks after a rise in highly publicized abuse and sexual molestation cases in youth sports. NCYS led a coalition to work with the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives Judiciary Committees to amend the Child Protection Act. Subsequently, NCYS announced the release of the “NCYS Recommended Guidelines for Background Check Screening in Nonprofit Youth-Serving Organizations” and introduced the opening of the National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI).
The co-location is the latest partnership for TEAMS, which since 2018 has been the exclusive home to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee’s SportsLink and NGB Best Practices Seminar, providing education to national governing bodies and the cities and venues interested in hosting their events. Since 2016, TEAMS has also been the co-location partner of the National Congress of State Games, which hosts its annual symposium alongside the conference. Earlier this year, TEAMS announced similar partnerships with Compete Sports Diversity and the Open Championship Series of cheerleading events to encourage their members to participate in TEAMS as well.