Coastal Half Marathon honored as a 2020-2021 Champion of Economic Impact in Sports Tourism

2020 Coastal Half Marathon named a “Sports Tourism Hero” by Sports Destination Management

Media Contact:

Ally Dorrough, APR • Gulf Shores | Orange Beach Sports & Events
[email protected]

1-800-745-SAND • 251-968-9327 (direct) • 334-391-7745 (cell)

GULF SHORES AND ORANGE BEACH, ALA. Sports Destination Management, the leading publication with the largest circulation of sports event planners and tournament directors in the sports tourism market, has announced the 2020-2021 Champions of Economic Impact in Sports Tourism presented by Traveling Teams. This year’s winners are responsible for contributing a more-than-welcome boost of over $400 million to the national economy over the past year.

Among the winners was the 2020 Coastal Half Marathon & 5K, which is owned and operated by Gulf Shores | Orange Beach Sports & Events and produced by Team Magic at the Orange Beach Sportsplex. The event was honored in a special new category – “Sports Tourism Heroes” – after being successfully held just two months after Hurricane Sally devastated the Alabama Gulf Coast. The category was added to honor those whose events overcame challenges beyond the pandemic.

“The nominations we saw were incredible,” said Publisher Scott Swoger. “What really struck us was the fact that each event nominated represented a step forward from the pandemic. In many cases, event owners were working under new, and often stringent, guidelines imposed by local authorities. The fact that they persevered in order to offer their events is inspiring.”

In 2020, GSOB Sports & Events and Team Magic mitigated the spread of COVID-19 by eliminating the normally included 1-mile fun run and post-race party, implementing drive-up packet pick-up, staggering race starts, conducting drive-up temperature checks and providing contactless awards pick-up.

This issue of the magazine honors events put on in 2020 (often against incredible odds and in the face of tremendous opposition from authorities), as well as those taking place in 2021. The economic impact to the communities represents a much-needed influx, which was reflected in spectator fees, hotel room usage, restaurant business and shopping in local stores.

All winners of awards have been recognized in a special feature published in the November/December 2021 issue of Sports Destination Management. The entire article with full details on the winners can also be found online.

Register now for the 2021 Coastal Half Marathon, 5K and 1-Mile Fun Run taking place Saturday, Nov. 27, at the Orange Beach Sportsplex at For information on upcoming athletic events along Alabama’s Gulf Coast, visit, or call 1-800-745-SAND.



Caption: The 2020 Coastal Half Marathon was honored as a 2020-2021 Champion of Economic Impact in Sports Tourism by Sports Destination Management.
Credit: Gulf Shores | Orange Beach Sports & Events



About Gulf Shores | Orange Beach Sports & Events:

Gulf Shores | Orange Beach Sports & Events is a partnership among Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism (GSOBT), the Coastal Alabama Business Chamber, Gulf State Park and the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. In 2007, the organization became a department within GSOBT. In this role, the GSOB Sports & Events – along with assistance from both cities – works to bring quality athletic and leisure events to Alabama’s Gulf Coast. To learn more about sports and events along Alabama’s 32 miles of white-sand beaches, please visit

About Sports Destination Management:

Sports Destination Management is written for the largest audience of sports event managers and tournament directors in the sports tourism market and maintains a focus on the important issues surrounding event location decisions and event management. With content from experts and thought leaders, SDM provides in-depth coverage of sports event planning and execution through incisive and relevant articles as well as insightful, real-world case studies showcasing best practices and successful event production.

In addition to the publication, SDM offers extensive digital resources through and the e-newsletter SDM Blitz, both providing decision support tools for organizers to ensure successful events at all levels of play.

About Due North Media:

Celebrating its 20th year in business, Due North Media, a division of Due North Consulting, Inc., is a niche business-to-business publisher providing media services to executives within specialized vertical markets impacting economic development including corporate site selection, business development, market-to-market events and sports tourism via publications, digital media, qualified list marketing and custom publishing.