Thursday, October 11, 2007

about the throw center

Our Field of DreamsA World Class Training Center for the Throwing Events

The Concordia University Throw Center is located on 10 acres of land near Marine Dr. and Portland International Airport on NE 33rd Ave in Portland. The unique layout will include a basketball court sized rain shelter for throwing in the Oregon elements as well as traditional uncovered circles and runways. All four throwing events will have the circles, cages and runways for small groups of elite athlete training, large clinic groups of up to 40 per event throwing safely at the same time or competitions ranging from local all-comers meets to the international level.

Why a Throw Center?

  • Because there is no facility designed only for the throws in this country. Every other throwing venue is an after thought to the running track or the football stadium.
  • Because throwing is a great vehicle for learning and growth.
  • Because Concordia has World Class human resources to use this World Class facility for the greatest benefit of the community.
  • Because this is every throwers’ dream.
  • Because it deserves to be done right.
  • Because it's beautiful, because we can.......

“Focus makes the difference.”

Why Concordia? – The NAIA Advantage
  • Concordia is going through an expansion of its campus and enrollment that includes a $30M Library/Community Learning Center and a new soccer/baseball complex. The mission is to grow the university and increase it’s involvement with and value to the community. The Throw Center and its programs fit this mission exactly.
  • The Throw Center is supported by Concordia University and the Concordia Foundation at the highest level. The Provost, the CFO of the University and the President of the Concordia Foundation are interested and available to discuss their support for the Throw Center.
  • The outreach programs become a reality working with like-minded partners like NIKE, adidas, SEI, Boys and Girls Clubs, Police Athletic League and Special Olympics. These partnerships and programs would NOT be possible at an NCAA school.
  • Combining training for youth, collegiate and elite throwers in time and place is NOT possible under NCAA regulations.
  • Coaching youth and high school athletes on an ongoing basis is NOT permitted by NCAA regulations. NCAA regulations, driven by the excesses of the football and basketball businesses, restrict the development of our sport, track & field.
A Center of Excellence in Portland
A unique partnership of public and private organizations is creating a Center of Excellence for the Throwing Events. The Concordia Throw Center will become the focus of throwers in high school, college and post collegiate levels with the talent and passion to compete in Olympics. Portland will be known for its excellence in the Olympic throwing events as it is known for its leadership in the sports shoe and apparel and computer chip industries. Concordia University and Portland will be known for throwing as U of Oregon and Eugene are known for distance running.

  • A regional and national resource for developing the throws.
  • Clinics and Camps – on a regular basis, year round for coach and athlete education.
  • Competitions at all levels – Televised International throwing events, collegiate competitions, all comers meets during the summer, Special and Para Olympic events, Scottish Highland Games, family fun days with throwing exhibitions and a learn-by –doing fair.
  • Throwing Festivals that include clinics, competition, and exhibitions for families and athletes.
  • A feeder system for collegiate throwing programs in the state – The Oregon Throwers Academy (OTA) – Founded in 2004, the OTA attracts young throwers from around the Northwest for regular year round training. The OTA develops young throwers for a collegiate career.
  • Oregon High School Hammer Championships – As a result of programs at the Throw Center, Oregon will have enough hammer throwers and coaches to require a state championship for high school throwers.
  • An International Network of Champions – The Throw Center is to be a resource for all throwers at all levels. Mac’s peers, Olympic class throwers and coaches will be welcome at the Center.

Performance Programs will develop:
  • American Olympic and World Championship medalists in the javelin, shot put, discus and hammer throws. The Throw Center will provide a venue for Elite and developing throwers to train with elite coaches.
  • Post Graduate Throwers Community – like Eugene’s distance runners, post graduate throwers will move to Portland to train at the Throw Center.
  • Collegiate Throwers who succeed at the NCAA and NAIA Championship level. The facility will be the home training site for Concordia University, an NAIA school, one and a half miles to the south of the Throw Center.
  • High School and youth athletes who understand and perform with sound technical skills. Since 2004, Mac Wilkins has run the Oregon Throwers Academy to teach young athletes how to throw. A major goal of the Academy is to develop a large enough number of hammer facilities, coaches and youth throwing the hammer to have a meaningful Oregon High School State Championship.

Participation Programs will include:
  • Outreach Programs that bring grade schoolers to the center to learn how to have fun being active with throwing and fitness activities. Nutritional education and healthy food samples are also provided. Olympic and National class throwers are used as role models and teachers for these youth. The program is designed to fight childhood obesity and diabetes.
  • Special Olympics and Para Olympics athlete and coach training sessions for shot put and TurboJav. The shot and TurboJav are official events of Special Olympics world wide. These athletes and their coaches will be able to use the facility and its resources.
• Partners –
  • The 10 acres of land for the facility is being leased from the Port of Portland for 15 years with a renewal option. The Director of the Port, Bill Wyatt, is a proponent of our vision.
  • Portland City Councilman, Sam Adams has voiced his support for the Throw Center and its goals. Councilman Adams is interested in connecting Portland with an international brand of excellence.
  • Concordia University is providing the basis for much of the contract and legal support for developing the Center. The Center will be managed and maintained by Concordia and the Oregon Throwers Academy.
  • A local excavating company, a local construction firm and several other businesses have contributed over $200,000 in services toward the completion of Phase I of the Throw Center.
Potential Future partners – Special Olympics, Self Enhancement Inc (SEI), Trillium Family Services, Portland Park & Rec Dept. for all comers meets, Portland Public Schools for the outreach programs, are potential partners for future programs originated at the Throw Center. Stackhouse Athletic Equipment of Salem is one supplier engaged already involved in developing a partnership with the Throw Center.

Responsibility to Fair Play
All of our programs are based on developing positive life values in our student/athletes. As a result, we take a clear and firm stand against the use of illegal performance enhancement substances or techniques. Any athlete caught using illegal substances will be dropped from the program and barred from the Throw Center. Today, drug abuse in sport is less prevalent than in society but more visible. As role models we need to ensure our position of providing positive images for society.