It is with much regret that I inform you that the Region III Cross Country Preview has been canceled. This decision has been made due to circumstances that are far beyond the control of Sam Houston State University or the City of Huntsville.
The National Guard has declared Kate Barr-Ross Park as a Federal Emergency Military Instillation. It is now the State Hub for all emergency aid drop offs and deliveries for the entire State of Texas. As of right now the National Guard is not allowing anyone in the park. Every available area of the park is being use to stage vehicles for fueling, loading and logistics as well as for housing and feeding National Guard troops. When City of Huntsville employees showed up to work this morning after the Labor Day weekend, they were told they were not allowed into the park.
When city administrators first made the decision to allow the National Guard to use the park, it was not clear just how large the scope of the troops would be nor the duration. The City Manager was originally told it would be one parking lot with a few trucks and they would be here just a few days. We tried to find an alternate location for the National Guard, but their footprint is already too large in the park to move to any other location. Moving a cross country race of this size in 4 days is just not a reality.
In all honesty, the work the National Guard is doing is far more important. Asking them to postpone relief efforts in order to move their base of operations for a cross country meet is not the right thing to do.
As we have all been impacted, by the recent disasters we were looking forward to hosting you and your teams and try to get things back to a somewhat more regular schedule. We have made this announcement early in order to hopefully give you some time to find another meet. I hope that you will come back to the Regional preview meet in 2018. We have been working hard to improve the meet and the course in order to grow it into an exciting event for you, your athletes as well as fans. Any programs that have pre-paid entry fees will be reimbursed.
On a final note, those of you that run the Region III Cross Country meet here in Huntsville. This WILL NOT affect the Region III Cross Country meet. It will go on as planned here in Huntsville on Monday October 23rd.
Head Coach Sam Houston State University
Men’s & Women’s Track & Field/Cross Country