Memphis Sports and Event Center holds first event Saturday

Published: Jan. 7, 2023 at 7:15 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The sounds of whistles and buzzers signaled life had started at the brand-new Memphis Sports and Event Center on Saturday.

The $60 million dollar facility is the first part of the new Liberty Park in Midtown -- an exciting project breathing new life to the historic fairgrounds. It’s also something city leaders have been trying to get off the ground since 2005.

“It’s the first weekend of 2023 and this project has been years in the making,” said Antonio Perez, who’s the general manager at the new midtown attraction. “It’s a fantastic facility and it’s great to finally give them an opportunity to play in it.”

The joint basketball and volleyball tournament was held at the south end of the complex, which is completed. Perez asks that everyone pardon the dust as final touches are being put on the north end of the complex.

However, he said when it’s completed within the next few weeks it will have 75,000 square feet of event floor space and can hold up to 2,500 fans in its bleachers.

“The purpose of this building is to bring in sports tourism,” Perez told Action News 5. “In the future, we will have teams coming from across the country.”

Spectators who were there watching their athletes play in the new Memphis Sports and Event Complex told Action News 5 they’ve seen these types of places across the country—and they’re ecstatic to now have one right here at home.

“I think bringing in any sort of tax money is good for the city,” said Patrick Burns, who was watching his daughter play volleyball on Saturday. “I’ve seen other cities like Nashville and Knoxville with places like this. I think this one is just as good, or better than the rest.”

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