SportsEvents Magazine

AUG 2016

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Page 15 of 67

hen Greg Turner, senior sports manager for the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU), was asked to help the AAU build skill-development programs that would add value for its members, the former Auburn University basketball star turned to one of the best basketball trainers he knew, Joe Abunassar. As the founder of Impact Basketball, Abunassar has worked for more than 20 years with a number of NBA draft hopefuls, many of whom have gone on to become professional basketball standouts. Turner's outreach resulted in The Lab, a two-and-a-half day basketball skills camp held at Impact Basketball's Las Vegas facility in March of 2016, involving 65 youth from six states, co-produced by AAU and Impact Basketball. In Grand Junction, CO, co-organizers of the US Bank Rim Rock Marathon, which takes place each November and has twice been voted Most Scenic Marathon by Colorado Runner, have added a new downhill half-marathon this year. According to Jennifer Stoll, executive director of the Greater Grand Junction Sports Commission (GGJSC), this new race and other ancillary activities added to the marathon have occurred largely as a result of the partnership between Colorado Mesa University (CMU) and the GGJSC, which has provided the operational expertise that has taken the event to new levels in recent years. These co-produced events offer examples of ways that event planners are joining forces with fellow planners, rights holders or other organizations to share the responsibilities and rewards of managing sports events. Recently, the organizers of these joint efforts shared some of their knowledge and experience, explaining the ways that partnerships between organizations can enhance the success of events and identifying issues that need to be addressed to avoid conflicts. Doubling Exposure, Sharing Resources For Turner, the benefits of co-producing The Lab started with marketing. "AAU represents a brand that most young athletes or their parents are very familiar with, while Impact Basketball is known for their expertise in training future basketball stars," he said. "The families of the kids that participated in The Lab felt comfortable with the AAU brand and were also confident that Joe BY MARCIA BRADFORD W GAME Plan t JOINING FORCES Considerations For Co-Producing Events August 2016 16

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