EXPERTS AT SPORTS AND ATHLETICS SINCE 1955.
We are Florida’s first and oldest sports commission. Our history dates back to 1955 when we led efforts to manage local and national golf tournament events right here in Pensacola.
Since then, our reach has grown to encompass more than golf. Today, we reach over 25,000 people across a variety of sport events, activities and initiatives, including baseball, basketball, football, running, soccer, tennis and more.
Pensacola Sports is a private 501(c)4 not-for-profit agency primarily funded from revenues generated from membership and events. Our focus has and always will be on education, inspiration and participation in various team, individual, amateur and professional sports activities. Learn more about what Pensacola Sports offers or meet our leadership team.
We are dedicated to inspiring our community to perform and connect with sports and each other. By fostering and encouraging participation in amateur and professional sports and personal physical fitness, we are creating a community that promotes sportsmanship, camaraderie and community. We do this through Event Management & Marketing, Sports Tourism Promotion, and giving back through the Pensacola Sports Foundation.
Mission: We are passionate about enhancing the quality of life, health, wellbeing and economic development of the Pensacola and surrounding regions through sports and recreation.
Vision: Pensacola Sports is a recognized leader—and champion—for professional and amateur participant sports, athletics and sports tourism in the Pensacola and the Northwest Florida region.
We have established our reputation as an organization that delivers access to unrivaled athletic events promoting individual health and economic wellbeing for our community: thus, enhancing the quality of life for its citizens.
We are experts at athletic event management and promotion.
We leverage the geographic beauty, natural assets and historic charm of our region to showcase the unique characteristics that make our community great. Because of this, our events are unrivaled in their scenic quality, and promote individual health and economic well-being for our community, and thus, enhancing the quality of life for all.
Our staff of professionals is experienced in all phases of event management, including marketing, budgeting, event operations, hospitality and public relations.
Some of our most successful events include the Pensacola Double Bridge Run 15K and 5K, and the Pensacola Marathon & Half Marathon, Subway High School All-Star Series, the Annual Awards Banquet, as well as several others.
Have an idea for an event, or need support? Taking existing events and elevating them to the next level of success is one of our specialties! See if you quality for one of our grants to help take your event to the next level.
Sports Tourism Promotion
Growing the health and vitality of Pensacola’s economy.
We are advocates for growing the health and vitality of Pensacola’s citizens and economy through education, inspiration and participation in a diverse range of amateur and professional, individual and team sports-related activities and events. These efforts contribute to the quality of life in our community.
As the sports tourism agency of Escambia County, we work with local, regional, state and national sporting event promoters, teams and organizations to generate economic revenue for our community, and attract national and international athletes to our area.
Sports tourism plays an integral role in attracting visitor athletes and supporters to our area. Through the Escambia County Tourist Development Council, Pensacola Sports administers grant monies to local groups and organizations that coordinate events with a demonstrated history of visitor impact or significant potential to draw overnight visitors to the area.
We invite sports tourists to stay and play, by working with a network of partner sport venues, accommodations, attractions and dining establishments to offer visitors a wide array of options during their stay.
The Pensacola Sports Foundation’s mission focuses on the development, education, promotion and recognition of youth sports, amateur sports, scholar athletes, and athletic excellence in the Greater Pensacola Area. Since 1984, the Foundation has provided over $500,000 in grants to over 40 area programs and originations, including:
- Red Cross Learn to Swim Program [provide links where possible]
- Special Olympics
- Senior Scholar Athlete Scholarships
- Pensacola Junior Tennis Association
- Great Pensacola Aquatics Club
- The First Tee of Northwest Florida
- Racquet Roundup
- High School All-Star Series
- University of West Florida
- Pensacola State College
A large part of the Foundation is giving. Grants are awarded annually, and those interested in applying can visit the grants page. Interested in giving to the Foundation, contact us for ways you can give.
- President Rex McKinney
- President-elect Cindi Bear Bonner
- Secretary Jake Renfroe
- Treasurer Chris Hart
- Shirley Cronley
- Blair Crooke
- John Hutchinson
- Rhea Kessler
- Hal Major
- Norm Ross
- Charlie Sherrill, Jr
- Jodie Webb
- Donovan Whibbs
- Greg Whibbs
- Jack Williams
Hall of Fame Criteria
Inductees to the Pensacola Sports Hall of Fame are selected annually by a selection committee. Members of the Hall of Fame are an elite group who have had continued excellence in sports or who have made outstanding contributions to Pensacola area sports. New Hall of Fame members are inducted and announced each year at the Cox Pensacola Sports Annual Awards Banquet amid great fanfare. If you know someone who you believe should be inducted into the Hall of Fame please send their name and contact information as well as their career achievements to Mel Bruce at firstname.lastname@example.org
Candidates should be selected for outstanding contributions to Pensacola area sports in the following categories:
- Improvements to the Pensacola Sports organization and program
- Superior achievement in athletics
- Meritorious service to a particular event, but not necessarily limited to one
- Other noteworthy accomplishments in the field of sports worthy of this distinction
Ben McLeod Jr.
Charlie & Anne Knight
Melissa Miller Schubeck
Matt Langley Bell, III
Wayne Niedecken, Sr.
Roy Jones, Sr.
Roy Jones, Jr.
Emmitt Smith, III
Ralph “Skeeter” Carson
Dick Merrit, Jr.
Ronnie & Janis Bond
William “Red” Vickrey
Ashton J. Hayward, Sr.
Dr. Nat Arenson
G. Pratt Martin, Sr.
John H. Whitcomb, M.D.
E.C. Cob, M.D.
Carl “Red” Barnhart
H.M. (Bill) Brady, Jr.
J.A. (Jim) Scoggins
Dr. Lou Gregory
Adm. Austin K. Doyle, USN (Ret)
Julian O. Olsen, Sr.
Sportsman of the Year
Sportsman of the Year is presented at the Cox Pensacola Sports Annual Awards Banquet for contributing to the advancement of sports in the greater Pensacola Area, or achievement of an outstanding athletic accomplishment. Sportsman of the Year is the most prestigious award handed out annually by Pensacola Sports.
Larry & Linda Thompson
Quint & Rishy Studer
Matt Langley Bell
Dr. Leo Flynn
William “Red” Vickrey
Mayor Vine Whibbs
Frank Brown, Sr.
Richard Merrit, Sr.
Robert G. Carr
Capt. JH McCurtain, USN
Thomas M. Lalor
Roger G. Martin
Wilmer H. Mitchell
Dr. Nathan Arenson
George E. White, Jr.
Porter F. Bedell
Sam A. Love, Jr.
Dr. William W. Miller
EH “Dude” McCrory
John Paul Jones