Morgan Walker, President of Southeast Texas Baseball Academy
How long have you been in the tournament business?
After my career as a professional baseball player, I was able to come back to Beaumont and start this new adventure of opening Southeast Texas Baseball Academy 20 years ago with my partner and friend, Jason Tyner. Since then, we have been able to grow Southeast Texas Baseball Academy as an elite baseball program for youth baseball players within Southeast Texas.
How long have you been working with the Beaumont CVB?
Ever since we got started, our partnership with the Beaumont CVB has been paramount in the success of what we do. The CVB sales team is always willing to go above and beyond to make sure that our coaches and teams have the best options possible. Our relationship has continued to grow and has fostered amazing opportunities for out-of-town teams to do while at the fields.
What impact to you think the Beaumont CVB has on the community?
The Beaumont CVB has a huge impact on the city. Not only through what we do together, in bringing tournaments to Beaumont, but also the work they do with various groups and events. When I got out of professional baseball and started this business, I was unaware of what tournaments, convention business, and visitation does for our city. Now that I have been working with Beaumont CVB team for so long, I understand what the business and hotel stays do to stimulate the local economy and am so glad that we can do that for the city. The CVB sales team goes above and beyond for sports teams, groups, and meetings in the area, and we are glad to be a part of that team.
What do you think makes Beaumont stand out as a tournament destination?
Ford Park Entertainment Complex is a top facility, with 12 championship-caliber fastpitch softball/youth baseball fields, all-weather turf infields, covered bleacher seating, at a centralized location. Being located off Interstate 10, gives those teams traveling to Beaumont easy access to the fields.
Ford Park Fields are an amazing place to play. Both myself and my partner, Jason Tyner, are baseball guys and know the game and how to create a winning atmosphere for teams playing in Beaumont. We pride ourselves in hosting top-of-the-line tournaments that keep teams wanting to play in Beaumont.
The city is continuing to grow and has so many options and experiences that players and their families can enjoy when staying in the area. Whether grabbing lunch or dinner at a local eatery between games or experiencing the museums and attractions, families have the ability to do so.
You recently switched from Nations to Perfect Game. What have you seen in the difference of teams and business to Beaumont?
Perfect Game's mission is to promote the game of baseball by hosting quality amateur events while providing meaningful opportunities and information to players, families, MLB organizations, college coaches, and fans. Now that they have expanded into the younger demographic, we could not be happier to work together.
Perfect Game lends itself to having a larger audience and is a top organization. They do not only just work with teams in the United States but international teams as well, giving us the opportunity to have visitors from all over the world play their next tournament in Beaumont.
What are teams saying about their experience in Beaumont?
We have a great relationship with teams and coaches to ensure that they are having the best experience available when playing in Beaumont. Ford Park Fields offer teams a great facility to play at with Texas-sized hospitality and friendliness that goes a long way. We are thankful to have the a great staff and partners like the Beaumont CVB to show our visitors that Beaumont has a lot to offer.
The estimated economic impact of Southeast Texas Baseball Academy's 11 tournaments from February to July 2021 is over $1.27 million.
*The economic impact is calculated using a formula provided by the Texas Travel Industry Association.