THE SPORTING LIFE
Area venues offer a chance to get in the game –
or just grab a seat to watch the best in the world.
Story by Kurt Dusterberg
Photos by Greg Davenport
Whether you are looking for somewhere to play or you prefer to be a spectator, there are plenty of impressive athletic facilities in Western Wake County. For those who want to lace ‘em up, you can take advantage of indoor and outdoor facilities that rank among the best in the region. Play in a league, learn a sport, or just get some exercise. And of course, the same facilities are ideal for kids too. Many of the facilities offer lessons, leagues, and camps.
If your playing days are behind you, there are terrific opportunities to be a fan. Professional golf and soccer, international amateur baseball, and a variety of high-level college sports are all part of the local scene.
Prestonwood Country Club
The Cary golf club is home to the SAS Championship, one of the premier events on professional golf’s Champions Tour, which features golfers 50 and older. For golf enthusiasts, the annual October tournament is a who’s who of golf legends. Past winners include Hale Irwin, Bernhard Langer, and Kenny Perry. The 54-hole club is private, but membership is not required for hosting corporate or charitable golf outings. Pictured above: participants in the SAS Junior Championship.
300 Prestonwood Parkway, Cary
Trackside Skate Plaza
The skate park opened in 2015 and features both street skating conditions and competition elements, such as an eight-foot bowl. The facility is open from 6am until midnight, and use of the 13,000 square foot park is free. Protective equipment – helmets, elbow pads, and knee pads - is required. Skaters 10 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
1250 Ambergate Station, Apex
USA Baseball National
This four-field facility within Thomas Brooks Park is home to some of baseball’s top team’s and tournaments. Coleman Field has seating for 1,754 and grass seating for 250 more. The facility hosts all the USA national teams for both training and international tournaments. The complex has also hosted the NCAA Division I regionals and the NCAA Division II World Series. The complex features a USA Baseball store and concessions.
7445 Green Hope School Road, Cary
Formerly known as North Main Athletic Complex, Ting Park features an 1,800-seat baseball stadium that is home to the Holly Springs Salamanders, a collegiate summer-league team that plays a 56-game season. Additionally, the facility has eight adult and four youth tennis courts, four basketball courts, and synthetic-turf soccer fields. The facility hosts parks and rec teams, community leagues, and private rentals.
1151 N. Main Street, Holly Springs
Located within Godbold Park, the skate park is a 12,000 square foot action sports venue that is open year-round to skateboarding, inline skating, quad skates, and non-folding scooters. Memberships are $28 for a 30-day pass and $275 for an annual pass. The park operates a pro shop, where you can purchase all required pads for participation, and the staff is trained to help with your gear maintenance. Waivers are required for all participants.
2040 N.W. Maynard Road, Cary
Triangle Aquatics Center
TAC hosts more than 70 aquatic events each year, with nearly a half-million patrons. The 72,000 square foot facility is home to a variety of competitive swim teams, as well as the North Carolina high school championships, the Special Olympics, and other organizations. Swim lessons and aqua fitness programs for adults and seniors are also available. Daily, monthly, and annual passes are available both for individuals and families.
275 Convention Drive, Cary
Cary Tennis Park
The park is one of the largest in the Southeast, featuring 29 championship courts, including one stadium court. Tennis buffs can find all the amenities here, including a pro shop, locker rooms, and ball machines. There are camps for kids and lessons for all ages. New for 2017: seven covered hard courts for indoor play, with stadium-quality lighting. In addition to public play, Cary Tennis Park hosts tournaments, including a September event on the USTA Pro Circuit/ATP Challenger Tour.
2727 Louis Stephens Drive, Cary
XL Sports World
XL Sports World gives adults a chance to play in recreational leagues, while offering children a chance to learn a variety of sports through lessons, school programs, and parties. With two turf fields and a multi-sport playing surface, XL offers inline hockey, soccer, lacrosse, and flag football. The mini sports academy provides an introduction to soccer, baseball, and basketball, as well as youth leagues in several sports. The 56,000 square foot facility is fully air-conditioned.
1016 Investment Boulevard, Apex