Iowa State University

Murray Blackwelder, External Affairs, (515) 294-7730
Jim Hallihan, Iowa Games, (515) 292-3251
Rich Harter, Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau, (515) 232- 4032
Steve Jones, News Service, (515) 294-4778


AMES, Iowa -- Officials from Iowa State University, the city of Ames and the Iowa Games have extended the contract to hold the Iowa Games at ISU and in Ames for three more years through 2000.

The Iowa Games have been held in Ames each August since 1987. A contract signed two years ago called for ISU and Ames to host the games through 1997.

"We're really pleased that Iowa State University will continue hosting the Iowa Games through 2000," said Murray Blackwelder, ISU vice president for external affairs. "The facilities and hospitality we have to offer here at Iowa State and in the city of Ames are second to none, and we're happy to share them with thousands of Iowans each summer."

Iowa Games executive director Jim Hallihan said holding the event in Ames is one of the reasons the games had a record number of participants in 1995 (15,710) and the second-highest total in 1996 (15,499).

"In the past two years, it's obvious to me that Iowa State and Ames not only have the facilities we need, but also the all- important volunteer support," Hallihan said. "We're happy that the Iowa Games will be back in Ames."

Athletes from all 99 Iowa counties participated in the 1996 Iowa Games, Hallihan added.

"We've evaluated the success of Ames and Iowa State University as hosts of the Iowa Games and we believe they're very worthy of a contract extension through 2000," said Doug Reichardt, Des Moines, chairman of the Iowa Games Board of Directors. "The competition and housing facilities, network of volunteers, and location in the center of Iowa make Iowa State and Ames the logical place to continue holding the Iowa Games for the coming years."

Rich Harter, executive director of the Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau, said the Iowa Games has an economic impact of about $2 million annually on Ames.

"It's an honor to be given the opportunity to extend our relationship with the Iowa Games," he said.

The 11th summer Iowa Games will be held Aug. 1-3, 1997.