ashleigh.pngA Note from the Executive Director:

Hey Sports Fans & Supporters, 

What a first year it’s been! I joined as Executive Director in January and am excited to share with you some of the things our Board of Directors and I have been working on since the DSC’s inception. I look forward to keeping you updated about the DSC through quarterly newsletters and urge you to reach out in between if you have any questions, ideas or comments. We are eager to collaborate with you and to find new ways to champion Durham together.

After getting many of the important building blocks in place over the past 11 months, the Board was ready to have important discussions about the strategic direction of the DSC at their inaugural retreat in late June.  Kevin Smith, a renowned consultant in sports tourism, facilitated the retreat as we discussed next steps and how to achieve our mission.  I will engage with many of you in the coming months as we roll out the Board’s strategic plan.

I am also excited to announce that we recently hired a Sports Services Manager: Alyssa Duke. She comes to us from the Atlantic Coast Conference where she spent 5 years working directly with the Women’s Basketball Tournament as well as other championships and senior staff. She previously interned for the Greensboro Sports Commission and the Durham Bulls, and received her undergraduate degree from UNC-Chapel Hill in exercise and sports science as well as a master’s degree from UNC-Greensboro in commercial recreation. In her role, she will support events, serve as the primary contact for local event owners and lead our social media efforts. Send her a quick note to say hello (if you haven’t already!).

We are also closing out our time with two interns, one Duke and one NCCU student, who have been working with us on special projects throughout the summer. There’s such a talented pool of collegiate students in our area and we look forward to engaging with them and continuing our internship program—we’re excited for a yearlong internship to begin soon with a young lady looking to get into law school to study sports law.

We have already worked with multiple events and have a few more on the horizon that we can’t wait to see come to life. We have a mixture of sports coming to Durham, which I think reflects how diverse our community is and what Durham offers. Be sure to follow us on social media (FacebookTwitter & Instagram) for updates and more information as these events take place and others are announced. 

I want to thank you all for your support as we continue to develop this new organization. Together, we are proud to champion Durham as the place to compete.

Yours in Sport – Ashleigh Bachert

DSC's Top 3 of the Quarter

 Here’s a quick hit of a few things that have a happened in the last few months:


The first DSC Event Owner Quarterly Workshop took place in May at the Durham Convention and Visitors Bureau office. The next workshop will be held on Wednesday, September 13, offering social media and PR tips to help raise awareness of your event. Follow our @DurhamNCSports social media pages for registration information.


The Brine King of the Spring Face-off Classic Lacrosse Tournament –hosted 32 teams across North America over 5 days in March. It generated 500 room nights, as well as a check for over $20,000 given to Coaches vs. Cancer Foundation. More on the economic impact of events will be included in future newsletters.


RDC Marathon and Half-Marathon – the Board entered into an agreement whereby DSC will be the title sponsor of the first marathon ever hosted in Durham County. The inaugural event will take place on November 12, 2017 at the Streets of Southpoint. There are runners already registered from across the nation and Canada!

On-Deck Events

I'll go into more detail about how the Durham Sports Commission supports events in our next newsletter, but in the meantime, wanted to share some upcoming events you may not know about: 

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 DBAP Gaming Challenge (DGC)

Sept. 28-Oct. 1, 2017 
The event will be hosted at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park and will be ran by Carolina Game Summit. With over 20 different video games being played throughout the week, the tournament will consist of players across North Carolina, with Twitch interviews and other interactive aspects for fans. It is the first time an event like this will be held outside in a ballpark.

MLK Rising Star Basketball Tournament

January 12-14, 2018 
In its third year, this AAU sanctioned event welcomes boys and girls youth basketball teams. Brian Dawson, tournament director, is looking to grow the event to over 100 teams and is utilizing numerous facilities to host the event. It is the largest basketball tournament in Durham.

US Women’s Curling Association 70th Annual National Bonspiel

February 15-18, 2018 
The event will be hosted by the Triangle Curling Club and will feature 32 female teams from across the nation and Canada in a 4-day event. It is the furthest south it's ever been held. The facility will be running games continuously on their 4-sheets of ice.

What We Do

The Durham Sports Commission’s mission is to create economic and social impact by leading the community’s efforts to attract, support and promote youth, amateur, collegiate and professional sporting and recreational events.

But what does that really mean? We champion development. We champion play. We Champion Durham.

We work with facility owners to make sure Durham’s places to play are top of the line. We offer funding opportunities. We provide marketing and volunteer support for larger events. We recruit more competitive events to play here. Our new website will be live August 31, so be sure to watch, for more details.


Sports and the Community

On Monday, July 17, Alyssa Duke hosted summer campers from Durham Parks and Recreation on a field trip to the AJGA Amino VITAL Junior Championship held at Treyburn Country Club, the first national junior golf tournament sponsored by the DSC. The group consisted of approximately 30 kids between the ages of 7 and 14. Most had never been to a golf course, watched golf or knew the rules. During their 2-hour tour of the course, they watched several groups play golf and asked a multitude of questions.

The kids were amazed at the size of the clubhouse which led to questions like; “Who lives in this house?” “How many rooms are there?” “How many people can stay here?” After thoroughly covering the clubhouse, the campers walked 7 holes learning about the “golf clap,” turf grass management and the environmental nature of the game as they quickly discovered the earthworms, frogs and squirrels that surrounded the course. This experience really opened their eyes to the sport of golf. From questions such as “why is he throwing grass in the air,” to “what if it goes in the water,” the kids were given a real chance to ask questions and see the rules of golf played out. They were quick to find hills where they could sit and watch the “really far ones” and enjoyed being able to wave, high-five and “golf clap” for the players. It is a great example of the social impact sports can have that the DSC will continue to organize in the future.

Upcoming Events

  • Bull City Gridiron Classic (NCCU vs. Duke football)- September 2nd, 2017-Wallace Wade Stadium
  • NC Jerk Fest 5K September 23rd, 2017-West Point on the Eno
  • DBAP Gaming Challenge September 29th-October 1st, 2017- Durham Bulls Athletic Park
  • Bull City Race Fest & Food Truck Rodeo October 22nd, 2017-American Tobacco
  • RDC 5K, Half-Marathon and Marathon November 11th-12th, 2017-The Streets at Southpoint

*The DSC provided funding assistance to events in white