Over 5,000 people visited Weber County in June – all in the name of soccer. This was the second year for the Ogden Peaks Classic Soccer Tournament, all held in Ogden City, but the significance of the event was more than that – it’s the realized vision of a grassroots group to give the Ogden community a chance to host people from all over the state at state-of-the-art soccer fields, something that wasn’t even imaginable five years ago.
The Ogden Community Sports Complex was the main host of the tournament with area high schools and junior high schools also hosting games over the course of four days.
Derick Wright, who is the chair of the Ogden Community Sports Complex Committee, has seen the complex area go from a dirt pit to beautiful sports fields used for soccer, lacrosse, football and rugby.
It took countless hours work to make the dream of the complex a reality, but Wright always believed that involving the whole community, including local businesses, to be a key to the success of the complex. He is now seeing that dream come to fruition.
“We had 10 title sponsors at $5,000 each this year,” Wright said of the most recent soccer tournament. The following were title sponsors: Visit Ogden, VCBO architects, Get Air, American Nutrition, Education First, Union Grille, IHC, Ogden City Schools, Moonlight Madness and Coca-Cola.
“We also had the Marriott Courtyard, Tona, Lucky Slice, Menchies, and Thai Curry Kitchen who were $1000 sponsors,” Wright said. Many other sponsors of the complex itself have signs hanging around the complex to show their support.
Many of those local businesses also rally at other sporting events held at the complex with food trucks or other community sponsorships to help all those who come out to the events have a good time, Wright said.
“The goals of our committee and the community was to provide a top tier sports complex in Ogden to attract people to our community and provide outstanding places for our children to play and compete. We also wanted our children attending schools to have pride in their home field. We will continue to upgrade and enhance the complex,” Wright noted.
Things are still growing; the community support is still lingering. The RAMP committee has always been a big supporter of the complex and that support still continues. “We just received a RAMP grant for $250,000 in 2018 to build an all needs playground, upgrade parking, an irrigation system and a skybox between both fields,” Wright said.
Locals and those attending the soccer tournament were impressed with what they saw. “This is by far the best tournament we have been to,” said parent Stefanie Jensen. “I mean the views and the fields – you just can’t beat it,” she added as she motioned to the mountain views on the east.
Wright said the work of the complex is not finished. “The future of the Spence Eccles Ogden Community Sports Complex will include an indoor complex. This will take time, money and support from Ogden City Schools, the Ogden School Foundation and some helping donors,” Wright explained. The complex will host on 3 on 3 soccer tournaments later month and donate the proceeds to the Ogden School Foundation, a tradition that was started last year that was highly successful.