Nathan Benderson Park is located in Sarasota, Florida. It is slated to become North America’s premier 2,000-meter sprint course and regatta center by 2014. Over $40 million is committed to the facility’s future development, including 2,200 meter racing lanes and straight shorelines by 2013, coaching lanes, wave attenuation, a multi-function boathouse and athlete training center, starting huts and finish towers, grand stands and a state of the art boat maintenance and testing facility. Most of these facilities will be constructed on a first of its kind “regatta island” – an Olympic Village type setting which will provide competitors the support and focus which rowing demands, and spectators a viewing and entertainment platform unparalleled at sprint courses elsewhere in the world.
The Park will also be home to numerous other paddle sport competitions, from dragon boats to canoe and kayak races, as well as triathlon and cross country events. And to top it all off, the Park is located immediately adjacent to University Town Center – Southwest Florida’s premier shopping, dining and entertainment destination opening in October 2014!
Nathan Benderson Park is a unique 600-acre park which provides the public access to a 500-acre lake. The county purchased the site in the early 1990’s. Before that, the property had been an active shell excavation pit for road construction fill. Cooper Creek enters the east side of the large lake and exits at the northwest corner.
Nathan Benderson park is situated west of Interstate 75 and east of The Meadows residential community. The newly constructed Cattlemen Road extension provides access to the park from Fruitville and University Parkway. One of a handful of sites in North America identified as having all of the natural attributes that make up a premiere rowing facility, Nathan Benderson Park began hosting organized regatta competitions in 2009.
Two successful regattas were held in 2009, followed by four in 2010, seven in 2011 & 2012, and twelve in 2013! We are now looking forward to another successful up-coming regatta season in 2014!
Direction to the regatta island from the NORTH:
Direction to the regatta island from the SOUTH: