3,000 amateur athletes coming to Yukon

More than 9K attendees expected at AAU Track & Field Championship

Discussing the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU)’s Region 16 Track & Field Championship set June 22-25 in Yukon are: From left, INTEGRIS Canadian Valley Hospital Chief Executive Teresa Gray, Oklahoma AAU Track and Field Sports Director Bryan Daniels and Yukon Chamber of Commerce CEO Pam Shelton. INTEGRIS Health orthopedic physician Dr. Craig Rogers and Yukon hospital personnel will provide medical services as needed to athletes and spectators during the regional qualifier meet. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

Yukon businesses are preparing for an influx of 9,000-plus visitors from four states when Yukon hosts the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU)’s Region 16 Track & Field Championship.

An estimated 3,000 amateur athletes ages 4-18 will compete in a series of track and field events June 22-25 at Yukon High School’s Miller Stadium, 1777 S Yukon Parkway.

“This is going to be huge,” Yukon Chamber of Commerce CEO Pam Shelton said. “It could be monstrous.”

Participants are coming from Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, and Arkansas – filling hotel rooms, restaurants and stores across the Yukon area.

Bryan Daniels, sports director for Oklahoma AAU Track and Field, said the upcoming Region 16 championship will feature a “full four-day schedule” with events running between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Sunday.

Daniels has been working for months with Shelton and YPS Athletic Director Brian Hinson to plan this major amateur athletic competition.

“It’s been a match made in heaven,” Daniels said. “We hope we can have this here every three years.

“This has been great. It has definitely exceeded the expectations.”

AAU Region 16 committee members were impressed with the hospitality during a February tour of Yukon, during which they stopped at Green Chile Kitchen, Pauline’s Southern Kitchen and Flower Shop Winery.

Daniels expects attendance to be “three to four times” the number of competitors, with family members converging on Yukon to watch this regional qualifier meet.

Top finishers in nine age divisions will advance to the AAU Junior Olympics National Championship set July 30 to Aug. 5 in Des Moines, Iowa.

INTEGRIS Canadian Valley Hospital will provide medical help as needed for athletes and spectators throughout the four-day track and field championship.

“We definitely want to support the community and this event,” ICVH Chief Hospital Executive Teresa Gray said. “If something happens that would require medical care, we’ll be able to take care of that.”

Yukon’s hospital will staff a medical tent with registered nurses and medics while Dr. Craig Rogers of INTEGRIS Orthopedics Yukon has offered his services.

A Pafford EMS ambulance will be on stand-by ready to transport any patient to ICVH in an emergency.



The Yukon Chamber is enlisting businesses to be highlighted on an event map – featuring food and drink establishments, shopping and recreation venues – that will be passed out to attendees. Cost is $100.

The 9,000-plus attendees will be encouraged to visit these participating merchants during the four-day event.

“Everything should be done no later than 5:30-6 o’clock so we can have the spectators, their family and friends go out in the community,” Daniels noted. “We want to have everybody shop here and fill up the restaurants here.”

This will provide an economic benefit for the city of Yukon and participating Chamber members, according to Shelton.

Spanish Cove Retirement Village is providing a continuous-run shuttle bus between noon to 6 p.m. that will take AAU regional meet attendees from the YHS campus to shop at retail corridors along Main Street and Garth Brooks Boulevard.

More major sponsors are needed to cover costs associated with presenting this large AAU event – “gold” title ($5,000), “silver” presenting ($2,000) and “bronze” premium ($750).

Funds are being raised to pay for staff working the event and for clean-up, Shelton said.

For more information, call (405) 354-3567 or visit yukoncc.com