The Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau has honored a longtime Riverbend booster with its 2015 Spirit of Tourism Award.  Leroy Emerick of Wood River has served on the Wood River City Council, served as Mayor, and also on the Levee District Board for a number of years, but his passion has been softball.

Emerick spearheaded the effort to bring state and national tournaments to Gordon Moore Park, of which the state tournament has been hosted by Alton for 30 years.  He also helped found what is now the CVB.  At Thursday’s Riverbend Growth Association Dinner, Alton Mayor Brant Walker paid tribute to Emerick:


Click for Walker comment

Walker then announced a new co-ed softball tournament to be held in mid-April that will be named for Emerick.   He said the sport continues to be good for the area.


Click for Emerick comment

The event will be held April 18-19 and called the Leroy Emerick Shake Off the Dust Co-Ed Softball Tournament.


(Copyright WBGZ Radio/