The Oregon Tourism Commission, through its Competitive Large Grants Program, has awarded Oregon21, based in Eugene, $10 million for the 2021 IAAF World Championships that will showcase Oregon on a broad international scale. The grant awardee will be funded $2.5 million per year for four years.
The IAAF World Championships is the crown jewel for the sport of track and field, a 10-day spectacle of awe-inspiring performances in which the competitive field for every event comprises the best athletes in the world. Oregon21 will be the largest sporting event held in the world in 2021, and the largest our state has ever welcomed. Oregon will be the first state in the U.S. to host this event.
“This was an opportunity to leverage resource in key international and domestic markets in a way that we couldn’t possibly do on our own, said Oregon Tourism Commission Chair, Ryan Snyder. “This event will showcase what Oregon is and why we are special to a worldwide audience.”
The exposure of Oregon on the world stage over the next four years, culminating in the Championships August 6–15, 2021, is an unparalleled opportunity for the state. For the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing, there were approximately 63 hours of competition broadcast to 194 countries over the course of nine days. For comparison, in that same year, the Super Bowl was broadcast to 180 countries for three-and-a-half hours.
“There is a deep-seated love for track and field in Oregon and this opportunity to host the IAAF World Championships will be a platform for Oregon tourism and business unlike any we have seen before,” said Michael Reilly, Manager, Oregon21, LLC. “We are excited to partner with Travel Oregon in creating an event that will engage communities throughout the state and make Oregon and our products known in households across the world.”
Oregon21’s goal, as communicated to the commission, is to deliver an event that includes, but is not limited to the following efforts:
- Oregon21 will engage communities throughout Oregon and the United States, innovate how the world experiences sport, and be a global platform for advancing diverse programs that leave a lasting legacy.
- Work with Travel Oregon to highlight the entire state of Oregon (encompassing all seven tourism regions), and create an event that is “Authentically Oregon.” Produce and deliver an experience that will create lasting memories for those who attend and spur a desire to visit for those who watch from afar.
- Benefit Oregon businesses—deliver a championship event that benefits and promotes Oregon and the people within our state by tapping into local resources and expertise at every level of the event operations.
- Offer opportunities to all regions of the state to host team training camps prior to the event.
“This event will not only showcase the state in a way that has never been done before, but it gives Travel Oregon the opportunity to fulfill our mission to inspire travel that drives economic impact,” said Todd Davidson, Travel Oregon CEO.
Travel Oregon’s competitive grants program awards eligible applicants funding for projects that contribute to Oregon’s tourism economy in communities throughout the state that support Travel Oregon’s vision of “a better life for Oregonians through strong, sustainable local economies.”
Travel Oregon’s Competitive Large Grants are opened for application only under the direction of the Oregon Tourism Commission.