Kendama Championships and 13 new events come to Spokane



Posted on April 7, 2014 at 5:53 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 7 at 6:41 PM

SPOKANE, Wash.--Spokane will host more than one dozen new competitions in 2014, including a unique national tournament.

The tournament will be the first event of its kind in America.

A student at North Central High School will be one of hundreds of people competing in the first ever National Kendama Championships.

Logan Moeller called it the yo-yo of his generation. He described it as a Japanese skill toy with three cups and a spike. He said he spends most of his free time playing Kendama and uses his concentration and coordination to nail down trick after trick.

"It's a really satisfying feeling when you learn how to do something on it,” said Moeller.

Moeller said he will test his skills on a national level on April 26. He helped bring the competition to Spokane after teaming up with his dad who works for the Spokane Sports Commission.

The Commission was set to bring 14 other new events to the Spokane area, including the USA Gymnastics Championships in June.

“Kids see it on TV. They want to be like those gymnasts they see. And with tumbling and trampoline, that's a sport that anyone can do,” said owner of Spokane Gymnastics, Nadine Burgess.

The Sports Commission brought 34 new competitions to town between 2013 and 2014. Officials said that number will likely go up with 20,000 square feet being added onto the convention center.

“That's really making an impact on our economy. That's creating new jobs, that's helping us fill pot holes and pay taxes locally,” said Vice President of Sports Development Brad Moeller.

CONNECT: Complete list of events coming to Spokane

One volleyball tournament in Spokane in March brought in $4.5 million.

The Spokane Sports Commission said it was also trying to bring an ultimate Frisbee tournament to town.