The Sporting Chance Center is the hub of youth basketball and volleyball in Southern Arizona, home to tournaments, leagues, camps, clinics, open play and other programs devoted to youth health and fitness. The 40,000 square foot, air-conditioned Center features a state-of-the art floating wood floor that can be configured with up to eight (8) volleyball courts or five (5) full basketball courts, and can accommodate virtually any sport or fitness activity that requires indoor space. The large, central lobby offers comfortable seating and viewing areas for parents and spectators, five large HD flat screen televisions, and free Wi-Fi. The Play Smart. Eat Smart. Cafe offers a range of nutritious beverages, snacks and food items at reasonable prices. It did not take long after its opening in July 2013 for the Sporting Chance Center to be labeled “the best” indoor youth sports facility in Arizona.
The Mission of the Sporting Chance Center is to provide safe, accessible, affordable indoor space for youth sports programs and other activities that promote health and fitness among youth.
The Sporting Chance Center is the result of a collaboration of several community partners over more than a decade of commitment to improve the lives of Tucson youth.
The Center is operated by Southern Arizona Community Sports, Inc. (aka “SACS”) a 501(c) (3) organization.
The history of the Center begins with the formation of Sporting Chance Youth Basketball, Inc., a non-profit organization founded in 1993 for the purpose of increasing opportunities in youth basketball for Southern Arizona youth. Through a variety of programs and initiatives, including tournaments (the very first youth basketball tournament in Southern Arizona was the Sporting Chance Holiday Tip-Off in December, 1993), leagues, coaches’ clinics, basketball outreach programs, community events, and, from 2000-2008, club teams, Sporting Chance has had a tremendous impact on youth basketball in Arizona.
Recognizing that the biggest obstacle to getting more kids involved in youth basketball was the lack of safe, affordable, and accessible indoor space, in 2004, Sporting Chance began devoting most of its human and financial resources to solving this challenge. Architects and other professionals were engaged, and the concept of a public-private partnership with Pima County emerged. Sporting Chance committed to raise at least $1 million from the private sector to be combined with Pima County contributions.
In 2007 a separate non-profit organization, SACS, was formed for the sole purpose of contracting with Pima County to develop, finance, construct, and operate a state-of-the-art indoor facility that would not only address the need for more space, but would become an icon of how public-private collaboration could work in our community. In addition to substantial support (financial and other) from Sporting Chance, SACS attracted significant financial support from the Tucson Conquistadores and Tucson Medical Center, as well as many other individuals, organizations and businesses committed to improving Tucson.
The ground-breaking for the Center took place on October 16, 2012.
On July 19, 2013, the Sporting Chance Center hosted its first official event — fittingly, the 20th Annual Sporting Chance Summer Slam youth basketball tournament, the longest running youth basketball tournament in Arizona and the largest in Southern Arizona.
The Center is managed by a team of experienced recreation and facility professionals. The staff is a group of enthusiastic individuals representing a cross-section of our community, including students from local high schools, University of Arizona students interested in sports management careers, and others who are committed to providing an excellent experience for our users. Meet our staff members.
Board of Directors
The Bylaws of SACS, the operator of the Center, provide for a Board consisting of between 5 and 15 directors. The Board, which currently consists of 7 directors, is in the process of considering additional members. Meet our Board of Directors.
Board of Advisors
The Center relies on a Board of Advisors to provide additional support and guidance from a wide cross-section of the community. Our current list of advisors.
The Center is the result of collaboration, commitment and contributions from a large group of individuals, organizations and businesses – all necessary partners in this important project.
The Sporting Chance Center is operated by SACS, a 501(c)(3) non profit organization, under agreements with Pima County, the owner of the building. SACS covers Center operating expenses by collecting (1) user fees (primarily rental fees) and (2) donations/sponsorhips. User fees are set as low as possible, in order to make the Center as accessible as possible while still covering operating costs. Funds collected as donations/sponsorships have a direct impact on user fees – the more SACS receives through donations/sponsorhips, the lower it can set user fees, and the more free programs it can provide for at-risk youth.
Please consider supporting SACS and its efforts to provide broad access to the Center by providing free and low cost programs for youth. Visit How You Can Help to make a donation now – any amount helps!