Explore Decatur - Site of the Girls' Fast Pitch Class B 14-Under Northern National Championship

By Maddie Heaps (mheaps@usasoftball.com) | July 16, 2018, 3:47 p.m. (ET)
What can you expect when your team travels to the 2018 Girls' Fast Pitch Class B 14-Under Northern National Championship in Decatur, Ill.? Find out below! 

Top 10 reasons why Decatur, Illinois, is the best city for teams and their families visiting for the USA Softball Girls' Fast Pitch Class B 14-Under Northern National Championship:

1. Easy Access - Centrally located in the middle of the state, the Decatur-Forsyth area is an easy drive (less than 50 miles) from Springfield, Bloomington, and Champaign, and a short trip from St, Louis (145 miles), Indianapolis (175 miles), and Chicago (180 miles). Travel by air is a breeze also, with daily flights to Decatur Airport from both St. Louis and Chicago.

2. Rotary Park - The tournament will be held at Rotary Park Sports Complex which offers five 300-foot, fenced softball/baseball diamonds, four regulation-sized sand volleyball courts, a full concession stand with pavilion and picnic table seating, restrooms, and playground.

3. Great Accommodations – The Decatur-Forsyth area offers plenty of great choices when it comes to lodging for the tournament. With 22 hotel/motels that are all less than 10 miles from Rotary Park, heading back to the room after a long day of play is a breeze!

4. Over 70 Locally-Owned Restaurants – Sure we have Arby’s, Subway, and everything in between, but when you’re away from home for a whole weekend and feel like some nice, fresh, local cuisine, the Decatur-Forsyth area has got you covered! For a full list of local restaurants, visit our Visitors Guide at http://www.decaturmagazine.com/official-visitor-guide/.

5. Scovill Zoo – One of 210 zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Scovill Zoo has hundreds of wild and domestic animals from Madagascar to Australia and every place in between. Take a ride on the Z.O.O. Express train or hop on the Endangered Species Carousel. For hours and fees, go to https://www.decatur-parks.org/scovill-zoo/.

6. Overlook Adventure Park – One of Decatur’s newest attractions, Overlook Adventure Park features two 18-hole mini golf courses, a high ropes course, and batting cages, nestled in the hills of Nelson Park. Not quite 5 miles away from Rotary Park, when the little ones get tired of watching big sis playing softball, take them on over to Overlook Adventure Park for some fun of their own! Check it out at https://www.decatur-parks.org/overlook-adventure-mini-golf-ropes-course-batting-cages/.

7. Children’s Museum of Illinois & Heroes Hall – Of course we hope the skies will never be gray, but never fear, for should there be a rain delay, the Children’s Museum of Illinois is here! A hands-on, interactive museum, with exhibits and activities that complement and enhance children’s educational opportunities, particularly in the arts and sciences, the Museum is located on the shores of Lake Decatur in Scovill Park, adjacent to Scovill Zoo. Opening July 7, 2018, report for duty at Heroes Hall, an exciting new two-story, 7,000-square-foot law enforcement-themed exhibit. https://www.childrensmuseumofil.com/

8. Standing Paddle Company – Beautiful Lake Decatur spans 2,800 acres with 30 miles of shoreline offering recreational opportunities and wildlife vistas at lakeside parks and the city marina. Now you can rent stand up paddleboards and kayaks at the Standing Paddle Company which is located at the Beach House on Lake Decatur. For more information or to make an appointment, call or text Abi @ 217.840.4770 or email standingpaddleco@gmail.com.

9. 3 Movie Theaters – Sometimes you just need a break from the hot sun and what better place to cool off than the comfortable seats of an air-conditioned movie theatre?!! There are 3 great options in the Decatur-Forsyth area. Check them out at http://www.decaturcvb.com/entertainment/.

10. Shake the Lake – Feel like listening to some country music? You’re in luck because Saturday, July 27, 2018, is the third installment of this year’s SHAKE THE Lake concert series. Join our friendly locals for a night of live music with Sam Grow and Canaan Cox. The concert is free for all ages in the parking lot near the Beach House. Gates open at 6 pm and music will begin at 7 pm and conclude at 10 pm. Food and drink will be available for purchase, so no outside food or coolers please. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcome as no seating is provided. Nelson Park – 570 North Nelson Park Boulevard, Decatur, IL.

To find out how your team can qualify for the 2018 USA Softball Girls' Fast Pitch 14-Under Class B Northern Championships, click here.