WESTFIELD, Ind. (WISH) — The Indianapolis Colts announced Wednesday they will hold summer training camp at Westfield’s Grand Park Sports Complex from 2018 to 2028.
The team penned a deal with Grand Park for ten years of training camps, with full access to the facility including outdoor and indoor fields, meeting rooms and offices inside the Grand Park Event Center, and 72,000 square feet for an expanded Colts City.
“It’s a world class facility where we can win a Super Bowl and get our team ready to play,” said Colts General Manager Chris Ballard.
Last year the Colts held training camp at their building on West 56th Street and had previously held camps in Anderson and Terre Haute.
“It was about my second day on the job and we were trying to decide what we were going to do for training camp,” explained Ballard. “When we decided to stay home, they had brought up a couple options and when Grand Park came up, it was a great idea.”
Grand Park staff say fans will be able to watch the practices comfortably, with ample parking, inclement weather facilities, and hotel amenities nearby. In fact, the new hotel developments also enabled the deal to close, according to Westfield Mayor Andy Cook.
“Our limiting factor was the hotel space where we could house (the Colts team) nearby,” said Mayor Cook, explaining the new development set to open in November. “The hotel is right here on the very south edge of Grand Park, called the Cambria Suites, and there’s two or three other hotels under construction right now in Westfield.”
The rest of the 400 acre Grand Park complex will still be open during training camp for tournaments and other team practices, including Westfield High School’s football team.
“Any interaction our kids can have with the Indianapolis Colts and just expand their vision for football and what it can do and who they can become,” said Jake Gilbert, head coach of Westfield HS football. “Also just to see up close and personal what the Colts do for our community and watch those players. We’re extremely excited.”
Ballard told the crowd gathered Wednesday that when the Colts management team made the decision, they had the fans in mind.
“I want our fans to be able to see it,” said Ballard. “I want them to see and touch our players in a way that other fans can’t in other cities. And that’s very important to our organization.”
Ballard says the players are also enthusiastic about the move.
“Anytime the players can come out and interact with their fans and be in a place where they can get ready for the season, they’re excited,” Ballard added.
Grand Park sits at 191st Street and Spring Mill Road, and is a sprawling 31 field, 26 baseball/softball diamond complex with indoor facilities, recreation trails, and a restaurant. In addition to the hotel developments, Westfield city officials said the Grand Park Village is also being planned as a retail and entertainment hot spot for the city.