MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Well, 2013 is over.
Now is the perfect time to take a look back at some of the great youth sports moments from last year.
It was another great year of Rutherford County youth sports with future stars beginning their paths to greatness.
It started January 2013 with the annual Arena Cross Tour at the Tennessee Miller Coliseum. In the past few years, the motocross racing organization has traveled to Murfreesboro, and fans have packed the arena watching the top stars in the sport.
The group does a great job holding races for some of the top youth riders, including many from the Rutherford County who get to compete on the same track as the professionals.
By far, it is one of my favorite events to cover each year, and believe it or not the AX Tour will be back in town in a couple of weeks.
In the past few years, Rutherford County has grown by leaps and bounds, and many new schools have been added to the area.
The growth has helped area sports, especially on the middle school level.
When I attended Lascassas Middle School almost two decades ago, there were only a couple of sports.
Today, like the high schools, each of the area middle schools has a full sports program.
In turn, the middle school action around here is just as competitive as the high schools. Overall, it has helped Rutherford County become a hot bed for some of the best sports action around the nation.
Teams like Siegel Middle volleyball and the entire Oakland Middle athletic program, along with many other local teams, have set the mark in the area.
However, all of the athletes have to start somewhere at a younger age.
Luckily, this area is blessed by the hard work of the Murfreesboro Parks and Recreation Department. The department puts together some of the best youth leagues in the state in sports like baseball, softball, basketball, soccer, and track and field.
It has been a pleasure to work with Thomas Laird and the rest of the crew from the department, and 2014 is sure to be bigger and better than ever before.
Thanks to the success of the local youth leagues, the Murfreesboro area has been able to attract big time youth sporting events each year.
For example, in 2013 the city played host to soccer’s Bash in the Boro, baseball’s BPA World Series and the TYBA State Championship, along with many other events that attract other young athletes from all over the country.
This year should be another banner year for youth sports here in Rutherford County, as most of the same events will be returning.
Hopefully, these events will help these future stars get the recognition they deserve, along with all of the coaches who volunteer their time to teach them life lessons both on and off the field.