Foxborough, Mass. - The NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships will return to Gillette Stadium in 2009, the NCAA announced today. The 2008 championships, to be held May 24-26, 2008, were previously awarded to Harvard University (host) and Gillette Stadium (venue).
The 2009 championships will again be hosted by Harvard University and promoted in conjunction with the Massachusetts Sports Partnership and the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau.
"We are extremely honored to host these exciting championships two years in a row," said Dan Murphy, Gillette Stadium's Vice President of Business Development. "The response from the New England lacrosse community, as well as the national lacrosse fans, has been outstanding. The fans will certainly provide a wonderful environment this year and one that we can build on in 2009."
In addition to experiencing New England's premier sports and entertainment venue, in 2009 fans also will enjoy the atmosphere provided by Patriot Place. The second phase of the 1.3 million square foot super-regional lifestyle and entertainment center adjacent to Gillette Stadium will open in 2008. Patriot Place promises to become one of New England's most popular daily, year-round destinations. Lacrosse fans will find large and boutique retailers, live and interactive entertainment, a variety of restaurant options and a state of the art National Amusements Cinema De Lux movie theatre when they arrive for the games in 2009.
The Boston Local Organizing Committee, comprised of Gillette Stadium, Harvard, Massachusetts Sports Partnership (MSP) and the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB), will work closely with the lacrosse community, the New England business community and city and state agencies to provide a championship atmosphere that creates memories for each fan and participant. Harvard will provide event management. The Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB) has been instrumental in creating a fan-housing program as well as funding the Massachusetts Sports Partnership (MSP) fan train from the Back Bay Station in Boston to Foxborough.
"Securing the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships for a second straight year at Gillette Stadium is another huge sports victory for Massachusetts," said Jonathan Paris, executive director of the Massachusetts Sports Partnership. "This is a testament to the strong partnership between Gillette Stadium, Harvard University, the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau and MSP, and we look forward to working with the NCAA in staging yet another collegiate championship in Massachusetts."
Gillette Stadium is home to the New England Patriots and the New England Revolution soccer team. The stadium has a capacity of 68,756 including 6,000 club seats and 87 luxury suites.
The 2008 championships will mark the first time this NCAA event will be played in New England, one of the fastest growing lacrosse markets in the country. This year's games will be played May 24-26 with champions being crowned in Divisions I, II and III. To date, tickets have been sold to fans who live in 43 states and three foreign countries. For more information regarding the championships, go to www.lax2008.com.