CORVALLIS, OR -- The National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA), announced the nine recipients of its 2006 Outstanding Sports Facilities (OSF) awards. The winners for 2006 include: Recreation Center, Florida International University; Kern Center, Milwaukee School of Engineering; Adventure Recreation Center, The Ohio State University; Student Recreation and Wellness Center, University of Akron; Campus Recreation Center, The University of Alabama at Birmingham; Activities and Recreation Center, University of California, Davis; Campus Recreation Center – East, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; University of Missouri Student Recreation Complex, University of Missouri-Columbia; and the Student Recreation and Wellness Center, Washburn University.

"These nine facilities represent the very best and the very latest in collegiate recreational centers," said Jeff Lopez, Director of Recreation at Illinois State University and Chair of NIRSA's 2005-2006 Facilities Committee, which oversees the award process. "These institutions really understand that students who use fitness centers and get involved in recreational activities are more successful students and more satisfied with their overall college experience."

To be eligible for an Outstanding Sports Facilities Award, the facility must belong to a NIRSA member institution, must be no more than two years old, total construction costs (excluding design and land fees) must be at least $2 million and the facility must be more than 20,000 square feet.

The judges are recreational sports directors from member institutions and associate members who are designers or architects. They evaluate each facility for its architectural design, functionality and how well it meets its intended purpose. The facilities selected exhibit a significant amount of space for intramural/recreational sports, club sports fitness and other wellness programs for the majority of students, as well as unique architectural features and activity areas.

NIRSA began presenting annual OSF awards for creative, innovative designs of new or expanded facilities in 1988. Each winner is considered a standard or model by which other collegiate recreational facilities should be measured and from which others can benefit. NIRSA selects and publishes information on these facilities as a resource for campus master planners, recreational sports directors, designers, architects, contractors and recreational sports students.