October 27, 2005 - by
Countdown to the ACC Championships

Oct. 27, 2005

With the ACC Cross Country Championships quickly approaching, many preparations have gone underway to assure the event will be successful. Stuart Pearce, Director of Event Management at Florida State, took time to talk with Sports Information about the big upcoming meet.

“It’s been about a three month process that we’ve been working off of to get things coordinated and set up. There’s been a lot of communication between the conference office and us.”

While FSU has known since August that they’d be host to this year’s championships, the primary set up will be taking place this Tuesday, October 25, and Wednesday, October 26.

“The coordination in August was mainly making sure we had appropriate hotel room space. It’s a home football weekend and also Homecoming, so there are a lot of different things going on within the community during this time. Tuesday and Wednesday will be the primary mowing, painting, rebar, bagging and all those aspects of actually making the course show up. The Greenway is a fantastic place, but it’s mainly just an open park. We actually create both a 6k and an 8k course using both the field and the trails that are accessible from the field itself.”

This is part of the reason why the Greenway is a good place to host the meet. Pearce points out that Tallahassee has a lot of green space, but that the Greenway has brought the most exposure because of its availability and the multi-purposes it serves.

“Our exposure out there is steadily increasing. We’re getting more of a dedicated group that uses the Greenway, making it just a fantastic course. The natural beauty of Tallahassee plays into it, and the trails that already exist, as well as the work that’s been done, make it an ideal place to run a cross country meet. It’s just a real special place to be.”

Volunteers are making this meet possible. Both for the preparation of the meet as well as the day of the meet, many people are offering their help.

“We’re very fortunate that we have the resources here that are available and willing to help out. It’s been really encouraging to see that. A total of somewhere between 20 and 30 people will be dedicated and involved in the studio operations of the meet. We’ll have somewhere between 10 and 12 officials who donate their time that are local to the community. We’ll have another section of students, including our student-athletes who will be volunteering. They’ll be out there doing anything from pointing the runners in the correct direction to run, to mundane tasks such as setup/teardown, assisting with parking, and controlling the finish shoot.”

While setup may be up to seven days prior to the meet, cleanup should take no more than a day, acknowledges Pearce.

“Our goal at the Greenway is to look like a cross country championship course that morning, but by the afternoon, it should very well resemble the Greenway that it was before the meet. I’m hoping by Monday afternoon, but it may be Tuesday morning until we get the last little final touches out of there.”

Pearce is ecstatic about the ACC Championships hosted by Florida State and looks into the future positively.

“We want to try and impress people now and put our best foot forward.”

By Stephanie Ecott

FSU Sports Information

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