ROCKFORD — Fred VanVleet, a former Auburn High School basketball player who worked his way to the NBA, will spend at least some of his spare time as the city’s first sports tourism ambassador.
The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau announced VanVleet’s role today while unveiling a new marketing initiative to bring athletes and tournaments to the city called Bring Your Game 2 Rockford, or BYG2RKFD for short.
The marketing is designed to attract athletes in various sports, including basketball, darts and everything in between.
“The brand can apply to myriad game opportunities,” said Nick Povalitis, sports destination and sales manager for the visitors bureau.
VanVleet will be the face of the marketing effort during the one-year agreement, which includes print, video and online advertisements focusing on his drive, determination and success. In the 2017 Sports Planning Guide, a 300-plus page magazine that highlights sports facilities across the country, VanVleet’s story and photos are told in a pull-out spread that also showcases Rockford and the new UW Health Sports Factory.