Sports commission sets goals

Jennifer Stoll
Jennifer Stoll

A Grand Valley organization plans to further promote existing sports events while bidding on new events as part of the recommendations from a consulting firm.

The Greater Grand Junction Sports Commission worked with Huddle Up Group, a Phoenix-based consulting firm led by Jon Schmieder and Gary Alexander, as part of a planning process for setting goals for the next five years.

“Our team and partners are excited about the plan laid out by Huddle Up Group,” said Jennifer Stoll, executive director of the commission. “The Grand Valley is an exceptional community, and sport and recreation tourism is an important piece of its appeal. Receiving input from top industry experts like Jon and Gary has provided a toolkit for leveraging our early success into long-term sustainability.”

The Huddle Up Group recommended the promotion of existing events, the creation of new events and bidding on additional events that fit well with the Grand Valley. The firm also recommended the commission expand community engagement efforts and explore ways to enhance venues.

The commission has launched a revamped website at

The commission — a collaborative effort of Colorado Mesa University, Mesa County, the cities of Grand Junction and Fruita and town of Palisade — promotes sports events that contribute to the Grand Valley economy.

The commission stages the Rim Rock Run through the Colorado National Monument. The group has brought in a number of other events, including the USA Cycling collegiate road national championship. The commission also has joined with Visit Grand Junction and the Grand Junction Economic Partnership to promote the Grand Valley as a destination for outdoor recreation and outdoor recreation businesses.

The group is led by a board of directors comprised of representatives from the founding partners as well as four at-large members. Jamie Lummis serves as board chairman in 2018, succeeding interim chairman John Hopkins.

“The organization has great momentum, and I expect implementation of the HUG strategic plan coupled with the leadership skills of Jamie Lummis to build on that momentum and produce even more positive results in 2018 and beyond,” Hopkins said.