The 2018 Midwest Collegiate Judo Championships will be held for the second time at the Savoy Recreation Center on February 10, 2018. Hosted by Kokushi Midwest Judo, the event will bring competitors from all over the Midwest.
Local organizer, Grace Talusan from Kokushi Midwest Judo states, “Champaign is a great place to have this tournament since it’s centrally located to Chicago, St. Louis and Indianapolis. This year, we have confirmed competitors from Illinois, Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky, Iowa, Wisconsin and even South Dakota.”
The sanctioned Shiai tournament will host men and women’s collegiate competitors from the University of Illinois, Ball State, Purdue, Iowa State, Loras College, University of Chicago and South East Missouri State. Iowa State will be defending their title as Collegiate Team Champion from 2017.
Judo is the most widely practiced martial art in the world and is an official sport in the Summer Olympic Games. In its competitive form, it involves throws, pins, chokes and arm locks, but no kicking and punching. Judo participants develop excellent physical skills and high levels of fitness, together with strong discipline and a respect for their opponents.
“We are thrilled this event is returning to the greater Champaign County area, using our facilities and bringing competitors from around the Midwest,” explains Ryan Reid, Director of Sports & Special Events at Visit Champaign County, who worked with local organizers to host the event to the community. “Judo and other non-traditional events continue to generate impact in the winter months.”
Reid anticipates that the economic impact of the event to be over $20,000 with 100 competitors in town for the day.
Opening ceremonies begin at 10:30 a.m. and competition begins at 11:00 a.m. The event is free and open to the public.
About Kokushi Midwest Judo
Kokushi Midwest Judo is a part of the Central Illinois Aikikai in Urbana, IL. They hold classes twice a week for both children and adults. The head instructor, Grace Talusan, has been involved in the sport of judo for 12 years and has competed on the national level, winning a gold medal at the 2016 Senior Nationals and several state championships. On the international level, she was a bronze medal at the 2016 World Veterans Judo Championships and a silver medal at the 2016 World Masters Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Championships. Grace served as head coach of the University of Illinois judo club for seven years.
About Visit Champaign County
Visit Champaign County, the local destination management organization, aided organizers in bringing the event to the area and will provide support in helping coordinate media and providing community resources to the competitors. Visit Champaign County’s mission is market Champaign County and a diverse set of events, in collaboration with community stakeholders, to attract and serve visitors, and to positively impact the local economy and quality of life.