Although Janis and I didn’t bet on Orb to win this year’s Run for the Roses, we did make it to the winners’ circle at the 2013 NASC Sports Symposium, hosted by the National Association of Sports Commissions, in Louisville last month.

Sue at NASC


Sue at the NASC Sports Symposium in Louisville

NASC truly understands the value of gathering destinations, rights holders and service providers involved in sports and has taken a leadership role in facilitating a conference specifically designed to address the needs of the sporting events industry. The conference enabled us to participate in engaging education sessions, network with colleagues and clients and have one-on-one scheduled appointments at the Marketplace with potential partners.

NASC does a fantastic job showcasing their host cities. Keynote speaker, Bill Samuels Jr., Chairman Emeritus of Maker’s Mark Distillery, a marketing genius and best friend of the Kentucky bourbon industry, set the pace for our stay in Louisville which fast tracked us through educational sessions designed for sales, marketing and professional development. Of course, they also left time to explore the sites and included transportation to a special welcome reception at the Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs sponsored by Louisville Sports Commission. While there we got a chance to meet the 135th Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird who was at 50-1 odds when he won in 2009!

NASC Tradeshow


The floor of the NASC trade show

All in all, the NASC Symposium was a win-win for Eugene, Cascades & Coast Sports. Not only did we learn a lot and came home with prospects and ideas, Janis won a $100 gift card to Target for being a social media whiz and I won an Intense Pro Code BMX bike in the fundraising auction for NASC’s Sports Legacy Fund. According to my grandson, winning the bike was better than winning the Kentucky Derby. Thank you, John David from USA BMX!

Sue HarshbargerAbout the author: With a lifelong dedication to working with sports planners, Sue is Director of Sports Sales & Development for Eugene, Cascades & Coast Sports. She began her career helping sports planners 25 years ago, while working in St. Croix USVI. Sue relocated to Eugene ten years ago and immersed herself in the healthy lifestyle the Pacific Northwest offers. In her free time – when not volunteering at sports events – she enjoys walking, hiking, biking, cooking and studying nutrition.