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Issue link: http://sportsevents.epubxp.com/i/780942
www.sportseventsmagazine.com January 2017 37 SPECIAL FEATURE: Awards & Recognition Issue For 60 years, the National Junior College Athletic Association (JUCO) World Series has been the Grand Junction commu- nity's flagship event. Every year, the championship baseball tournament brings together 12 teams from junior colleges across the country to compete in a week-long event. "The event typically starts Memorial Day weekend every year, so it serves as the unofficial kick off to summer in the Grand Junction community," Jamie Hamilton said. Since the beginning, the JUCO World Series has been a communitywide effort. The local organizing committee consists of 80 individuals dedicated to facilitat- ing the best possible tournament for athletes, their support teams and fans year after year. Local businesses have supported the event, raising funds that have taken the player and fan experience to incredible levels, including live streaming, a team ambassador program, a kick-off banquet and a multi-million-dollar stadium renovation. And not only does the entire community get in on the action of the JUCO World Series, but also generation after generation of local families. "We are now entering the fourth gen- eration of fans in attendance," Hamilton said. "I was born in Grand Junction and my grandfather took me to the JUCO World Series when I was three years old. Last year, I got to take my one-year-old granddaughter to the tournament. The JUCO World Series is truly a sense of family. It's one of those events where memories are created." And those memories are created for thousands of people every year. Last year, more than 110,000 fans attended the 19 games. Thanks to a contract extension, families in and around Grand Junction can continue making those memories for another 20 years. n National Junior College Athletic Association (JUCO) World Series Jamie Hamilton, Chairman Grand Junction, CO