Nonprofits and Sports Business

Art Van secures stadium naming rights

September 20, 2012
| By Pat Evans |
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The naming rights to the West Michigan Sports Commission’s $7.8 million baseball-softball complex have been granted to Art Van Furniture, WMSC Executive Director Mike Guswiler announced today.

The Warren-based furniture company has committed $1.8 million to the complex, located in Plainfield Township, and construction is slated to begin this fall. The commission paired with construction manager Owen-Ames-Kimball and architect Progressive AE to lead the project.

“Art Van is very proud to support this vital regional initiative,” said Art Van Elslander, owner of Art Van in a statement this morning. “As a Michigan-based company, we are dedicated to strengthening Michigan communities.”

The complex’s fundraising campaign, Everyone Wins, now has brought in $6.8 million for the complex, which is just $1 million short of the Phase I goal.

“Art Van has come through in a big way, and this community is very grateful for its tremendous support,” said Dan DeVos, Everybody Wins co-chair and WMSC board member.

“What was a solid vision for a premier sports facility is soon to become a reality, drawing hundreds of ball teams each year from across Michigan and neighboring states.”

Although the full complex will house 12 fields, Phase I will include eight fields and a Miracle Field for players with disabilities. Several fields will include lights, grass infields and covered dugouts. A championship field will seat 1,000.

“One of our top priorities has been to build a championship-caliber, multi-field, baseball-softball complex,” Guswiler said.

He said the facility is expected to generate more than $10 million from visitor spending in its first five years.

The groundbreaking date will be announced in the future and fundraising will continue through construction of Phase I, with Phase II to be scheduled at a later date. 

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