Sports Museums and Halls of Fame
“Its collection may contain artefacts, documents and relics relating to ordinary mortals as well as the famous or even the infamous” (Redmond, 1973:p43) Hall of fame:
Are attractions which specifically venerate the famous, the gifted or the exceptional. (Gammon, 2002) “Sports museums and halls of fame provide a different example of passive sport tourism likely to attract the connoisseur” (Standeven & De Knop, 1999:115). Halls of fame and sports museums predominantly feed off nostalgia. Baseball Hall of Fame
1st Hall of Fame in 1939 in Cooperstown (New York)
The Hall of Fame is comprised of 300 elected members. Included are 208 former major league players, 28 executives, 35 Negro Leaguers, 19 managers and 10 umpires. The Baseball Writers’ Association of America has elected 112 candidates to the Hall while the Committees on managers, umpires, executives and long-retired players (in all of its forms) has chosen 162 deserving candidates (96 major leaguers, 28 executives, 19 managers, nine Negro Leaguers and 10 umpires). The defunct “Committee on Negro Baseball Leagues” selected nine men between 1971-’77 and the Special Committee on Negro Leagues in 2006, elected 17 Negro Leaguers. The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum collections feature just under 40.000 three-dimensional items, three million books and documents and 500.000 photographs. The Museum tells visitors the story of baseball through its three-story timeline, with the majestic Plaque Gallery serving as a centrepiece. http://baseballhall.org/
Why are Sports Museums and Halls of Fame an integral part of sport tourism? Attractions
Sport tourism attractions are destinations that provide the tourist with things to see and do related to sport. Attractions can be natural (parks, mountains, wildlife) or human-made (museums, stadiums, stores). General characteristics represented in this core area of sport tourism include visitations to: (a) state-of-the-art sport facilities and/ or unique sports facilities that generally house sports events, such as stadiums, arenas, and domes; (b) sport museums and hall/walls of fame dedicated to sport heritage and to honouring sport heroes and leaders; (c) sport theme parks including water parks, summer ski jumps, bungee jumping; (d) hiking trails developed for exploring nature; and (e) sport retail stores. Aside from the attraction of Broadway shows and shopping on Madison Avenue, over 50,000 New York City visitors tour Madison Square Garden (Goldwater, 1997). Likewise, the MCI Center in Washington, DC, is positioned as a year-round tourist destination complete with 100,000 square feet of adjoining shopping, entertainment, and dining facilities, a National Sport Gallery, and the Sportcasters Hall of Fame and Museum (Kaetzel, 1997).
There are currently 135 members of the International Association of Sports Museums and Halls of Fame ranging from local museums such as the San Diego Hall of Champions Sports Museum to the International Olympic Museum, Library, and Study Center. The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York, the International Hockey Hall of Fame and Museum in Toronto, Canada, and the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Tokyo, Japan, attract the most visitors—each reporting over 300,000 per year (Cober, 1997). Although retail stores are not frequently considered sport tourism attractions, the Bass Pro Shop in Springfield, Missouri, is recognized as the number one tourist attraction in Missouri, accounting for 3.5 million visitors per year. This outdoor sport retail outlet measures 350,000 square feet. Visitors travel from across the globe to explore the vast array of sporting goods as well as a thirty-four-feet high waterfall and four massive aquariums, the largest being 30,000 gallons complete with bass and other freshwater fish (Bass Pro Shop, 2002). Tours
Sport tourism tours bring visitors to their favourite sport event,...
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