With the nation’s second-largest convention facility, Orlando is known for hosting our share of massive conferences and events. But you might be surprised to learn that a youth volleyball tournament has grown to become the biggest of them all.

This week and next, the 46th annual AAU Junior Nationals Volleyball Championships is taking place at the Orange County Convention Center and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Between players, coaches and spectators, attendance is projected to surpass 110,000!

That translates to $108 million in economic impact for our region, as participants and their families also fan out to enjoy our theme parks, attractions, restaurants, shops and hotels.

I appreciate and value the strong partnership the Amateur Athletic Union and Visit Orlando have forged, which has supported the growth of this important event that is now the largest volleyball tournament in the world!

Orlando is fortunate to have the AAU headquartered locally, and we are proud to host several of the organization’s most prominent events across all sports, including football, basketball, baseball, track and field, and many others.

It speaks to the fact that, when it comes to combining youth sports with an unforgettable vacation experience, no one does it better than Orlando. You could say it’s a win for everyone involved!

-- George Aguel