What's New in Sports
New sports venues, renovations and events make Virginia a top sports destination. Below are some highlights:
After years of construction, three Metro Silver line stations opened in Loudoun in late 2022, finally connecting the county with direct public rail to Washington DC. The three stops are Dulles International Airport, Loudoun Gateway, and Ashburn Station.
Starting in 2022, an additional round-trip Amtrak train to Roanoke will depart DC in the morning and serve Alexandria, Burke, Manassas, Culpeper, Charlottesville, Lynchburg, and Roanoke.
BLUE RIDGE HIGHLANDS
Four new boat landings and river access points have been added to the The New River Water Trail in Giles County.
Wintergreen Resort has added a new 9-hole putter disc golf course.
Kings Dominion debuted Virginia’s first 4D Spin Coaster in March. Tumbili suspends riders on either side of the track as the cars flip continuously throughout the ride. Featuring state-of-the-art magnetic technology that induces and controls spinning, this 4D Spin Coaster gives riders the feeling of weightlessness as they cruise along the track tumbling and spinning head over heels in the rainforest tree canopy.
The Henrico Sports and Events Center will open in fall 2023 with 12 basketball courts or 24 volleyball courts and an arena with stadium seating. The 185,000-square-foot facility is projected to help position Henrico County as a leader in sports tourism by bringing big-ticket weekend events and visitors to the region.
Liberty University Shooting Complex includes a pistol range, a rifle range, an instructional area, and a three-gun competition range, skeet and trap, 5 stand area, outdoor archery, sporting clays, and biathlon course.
The Liberty University Natatorium features a 50-meter by 25 yards pool, fitting nine Olympic-sized lanes or 20 short course lanes and has a movable bulkhead. A separate 17-foot-deep diving well can fit an additional eight short course lanes and has 1- and 3-meter springboards and a three-column tower, featuring 1, 3, 5, 7.5 and 10-meter platforms. Bleacher seating for 1,400 which wraps round three sides.
Richmond’s brand-new entertainment and food venue, The Park RVA, features a number of activities including indoor mini golf, duckpin bowling, and karaoke.
COASTAL VIRGINIA - EASTERN SHORE
Iron Pony Adventure Park, Chincoteague Island’s newest attraction for family fun, recently opened to the public. Guests can climb to new heights & experience the thrill of 30+ aerial obstacles on 2 full levels. Take yourself to the edge and try the pony plunge, a 26-foot-high leap of faith.
COASTAL VIRGINIA - HAMPTON ROADS
The Hampton Virginia Aquaplex is set to make a big splash this Fall. This state-of-the-art facility is the largest of its kind in Virginia. Purpose-built for competitive aquatics, the Aquaplex was designed to host Mid-Atlantic and national competitive swimming and diving events, artistic swimming, water polo, and more. Spectator seating for 1,500 overlooks the eight-lane, 50-meter pool with two moveable bulkheads. Seating for 760 athletes occupies the wide, spacious pool decks for the smoothest of swim and dive event execution.
A new Interactive Bike Trails Map was just launched for cyclists to find a variety of bike trails in Newport News. The trails are separated into three categories: road biking, recreational biking and mountain biking, covering many miles of local terrain with varying degrees of difficulty.
Virginia Beach Sports Center is a state-of-the-art facility that hosts a diverse roster of sporting events and tournaments. The new 285,000-square-foot complex has space for 12 basketball courts convertible to 24 volleyball courts and flexible floor space as well as an Indoor articulated track.
The 85,000 square foot >Apex Entertainment Virginia Beach opened in December 2020 and offers 24 lanes of bowling, VR experiences, a 95+ game arcade room, mini golf, three escape rooms, go kart track, ropes course, axe throwing, a two story American cuisine restaurant and event space.
The Crystal City Water Park in Arlington will reopen in 2023 with an entirely new presence, complete with new restaurant kiosks and seating areas, a full-service restaurant, new water features — including a “water wall” with a bar perched on top — and a stage. The new kiosks will highlight local, minority- and women-owned businesses, local favorites and renowned names. In addition to decorative water features, the revamped park will also feature public art installations and a building with public restrooms and bike facilities near the entrance to the Mt. Vernon Trail.
Chill-Axe-In’ axe throwing recently opened in Brandy Station. A perfect spot for friends who want to try out axe throwing and have a great time.
Patriot Park North is Fairfax County’s new baseball and softball complex, it consists of four 90-foot diamonds, two 70-foot diamonds, batting cages, a press box and much. The facility is set to open in Spring of 2023.
In Herndon, the new Hashtag Gaming Arena is the perfect destination for those gamers in your life. Billed as the largest board game and collectibles retailer in the Mid-Atlantic, this first-of-its-kind facility hosts events for tabletop games, eSports, game education programming, and a host of retail experiences.
Opened in Fall of 2022, Hal & Berni Hanson Regional Park features 10 multi-purpose soccer fields, two turf fields and four baseball/softball fields, a cricket field, four tennis/pickleball courts, grandstands batting cages and much more.
The Ballpark Loudoun opened July Fourth weekend. America’s Favorite Pastime…Re-Imagined, The Ballpark Loudoun will be a unique and fun active entertainment experience that combines integrated cutting-edge technologies, top-of-the-line skill development opportunities and a full-service restaurant and bar, to create a custom experience for all ages and skill levels. The Ballpark Loudoun will have four HitTrax™ Suites, which are interactive batting cages that combine eSports with our national pastime. Game opportunities range from team competitions to home run challenges and can take place in a virtual backdrop setting of more than 40 ballparks from across the country.
The St. James, a new 450,000-square foot sports complex in Springfield, VA, is now open. The complex offers the most comprehensive combination of sports and wellness venues including a FIFA regulation-sized turf field (65-foot ceiling clearance), two NHL regulation-sized ice rinks + training center, four NBA-regulation basketball courts that convert into nine volleyball courts, 50-meter Olympic regulation pool, six batting cages, eight international regulation singles squash courts and seven golf simulators, a premium health club, a spa, and a medicine center, as well as an entertainment center, an indoor water park, shops, and cafes/restaurants.
The Horizons Edge Sports Campus is a 90,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art sports facility and event complex hosts events for sports, family activities, businesses it includes 4-basketball courts, 6-volleyball courts, a 200 x 100 foot multipurpose/indoor soccer field, and a family entertainment center.
The Atlantic Union Bank Center located on the campus of James Madison University seats 8,500 for basketball games, It features state-of-the-art technology such as video boards, lighting and sound. The facility is now open.
A state-of-the-art esports arena is open at Shenandoah University, within the 1,571-square-foot arena is a stage, 12 competitor stations, 70 spectator seats, a broadcasting booth and three 12-foot projector screens on three walls.
The Carilion Clinic IRONMAN® 70.3® Virginia's Blue Ridge triathlon was held on June 5th, 2022 in the Roanoke Valley in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains. The race included a 1.2-mile swim at Carvins Cove, a 56-mile bicycle ride through Botetourt County and a 13.1 mile run on the Roanoke River Greenway.
The Jackson River Sports Complex affords a first-class sports facility for events. The sports complex totals 75 acres; with 50 developed acres offering five lighted multi-use athletic fields/press box, lighted tennis courts, basketball courts, 20 acres for open turf sports (soccer, flag football), walking area, restrooms, gazebo, covered shelters with electricity, concession areas, playground equipment, ample parking and the River Rock Amphitheatre. The complex offers bleacher and festival seating – allowing fans to feel like they are part of the action.
SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA - BLUE RIDGE HIGHLANDS
The Christiansburg Huckleberry Park plans to open early 2023. The park will feature several unique amenities such as a splash pad, a universal playground, an obstacle course, a fitness course, multiple dog parks, as well as volleyball and pickle ball courts and an amphitheater. This will be the only facility like it in the state.
The newly opened Damascus Trail Center is a regional hub for outdoor recreation uniting visitors and volunteers with a wide range of natural resources in the region. The Trail Center is ideally positioned to greet visitors of three of the area’s most renowned National Trails: the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (AT), the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail, and the Virginia Creeper National Recreation Trail.