Tournament Capital? This organization ranks Kelowna number one — far ahead of Kamloops - InfoNews

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Tournament Capital? This organization ranks Kelowna number one — far ahead of Kamloops

Image Credit: Jennifer Stahn
April 17, 2019 - 5:30 PM

KELOWNA - Kamloops may call itself the Tournament Capital of Canada but Kelowna is ranked the number one sports hosting city for its size in Canada.

Still, taking that title away from Kamloops may not be easy.

“It’s not challengeable,” Sean Smith, Business Operations and Events Supervisor for the City of Kamloops told “It’s copyrighted.”

He would not comment further on the issue, saying the city will put out a news release.

This is the second year the Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance has posted its Global Sports Impact Canada Index that ranks Canadian cities that host national and international sporting events. This year’s rankings are based on events from 2018 and booked events for 2019.

Kelowna ranked number one for the 50,000-150,000 population category, having hosted eight national and eight international championships.

Kamloops ranked 14th, having hosted three national and no international events.

Kelowna was given an overall score of 4,059 versus 605 for Kamloops.

Penticton and Vernon did not make the listing in the under 50,000 category.

Smith said the designation of Tournament Capital of Canada was simply applied for by the City of Kamloops. Since no one else had that title, they were able to trademark the name.

“We are committed to establishing Kelowna as a centre for multi-sport excellence, as a host to tournaments large and small, including major athletic events, such as the Apple Triathlon and Okanagan Marathon,” said Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran in a news release. “With sport and event tourism as a key driver for travel to Kelowna, it contributes significantly to the local economy through tourism’s $1.25 billion in annual economic output.”

Last year, the Kelowna Rockets were awarded the 2020 Memorial Cup by the Canadian Hockey League over the Kamloops Blazers and others. The Blazers, however, pushed the Rockets out of the playoffs this year. 

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