Customer Spotlight – The Summit Sports & Ice Complex
Since opening its doors in 1993, The Summit Sports & Ice Complex has become a true destination for events of all types, from tournaments to trade shows and beyond, and see over 1.5 million people come through the facility every year. Located in Dimondale, MI (a suburb of Lansing, MI), the complex has grown to include 176,000 sq. ft of space at The Summit, which hosts two hockey rinks, two soccer fields, a field house, a gymnastics facility, a pub, and more. Additionally, they host 54,000 sq. ft of court space at their facility Aim High, located directly next door.
We spoke with Bobby Perry, Assistant Hockey Director at The Summit Sports & Ice Complex, to see what makes them unique and how they’ve been able to manage and continue their amazing growth over the years.
What makes The Summit different than other sports facilities?
Even though we’re a very large facility, we are still a family-owned business, which I think makes us unique. Also, a while back, our owner made the decision to open up the facilities to host more events than just sports, and that flexibility in our space has made us stand out from others. For example, all winter long we have our turf down so we can still host turf-based sports events indoors whenever needed, but during specific weekends, we can bring it up to host other events, like concerts, trade shows, etc.
What’s your favorite thing about being part of the Summit team?
It’s just such a friendly and personal environment. It’s a genuine company and all the staff and employees are actually friends – it’s easy to work with and for people when you feel like family. We also have a motto around here that we live by: “No job too small.” It means that everybody here is willing to do everything and pitch in when needed, which helps to ensure that everything gets done but also helps all of our employees learn a variety of different skills and become very well-rounded.
What would you recommend to other facilities looking to bring more events in?
Be adaptable and creative with your space, be open-minded about what kinds of events you will host. Get creative with non-sporting events to help offset any issues around seasonality of certain sports.
What do you see as being the biggest growing trend in the youth sports industry today?
We offer a lot of intro to sports classes and sessions, and see a lot of kids these days specializing in just one or two sports. There are still a lot of kids participating in lessons, but where we used to have many kids participating in the general classes, there are a lot more of them choosing to do individual training sessions instead.
What motivates you every day?
I grew up playing sports, so I enjoy working in the sports industry. It’s not a 9-5 desk job and it’s not repetitive. Working here each week varies with each event so it makes it easy to come in and get the job done. I also like the fact that what we do has such an impact on the community and contributes directly to its success. When you love your job, it’s easy to come to work!
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