Baseball’s hosts with the most
A giant baseball is on display during the lunch stop at Post 28 in Spartanburg, S.C., on Tuesday, August 20. Photo by Ben Mikesell/The American Legion

Baseball’s hosts with the most

As the permanent host of the American Legion World Series, Shelby, N.C., has long supported American Legion Baseball.

So has its state, as more national American Legion Baseball events have been held in North Carolina than any other state since national competition began in 1926.

Starting with a regional hosted in Raleigh in 1929, North Carolina has hosted 70 national tournament events. That number will grow in 2021 as Randolph County in Asheboro will host its eighth regional and Shelby will host its 11th ALWS.

But other states have also frequently hosted national events.

Following North Carolina in the top 10 for most national tournaments hosted are South Carolina (64), Nebraska (47), North Dakota (43), New Hampshire (41), California (36), Montana (35), Louisiana (34), Connecticut (32) and Illinois (32).

South Carolina has hosted the ALWS five times — in Spartanburg in 1936 and 1938, Charleston in 1946, Orangeburg in 1966 and Sumter in 1981.

Anderson, Belton, Columbia, Florence, Greenville, Greenwood, Greer and Rock Hill also have hosted national tournaments from that state and South Carolina hosted at least one event in 11 straight seasons from 1938 to 1948.

Nebraska hosted its first national tournament in 1928 and hosted at least one national event for 10 straight seasons from 1952 to 1961. Omaha (1939, 1949 and 1950) and Hastings (1959, 1960, 1961 and 1969) are previous ALWS hosts and Grand Island, North Platte, Ralston, Scottsbluff and York also have been national tournament hosts.

North Dakota has hosted the ALWS six times — in Bismarck in 1956 and 1962 and Fargo in 1983, 1992, 1995 and 2010. Dickinson, Grand Forks, Jamestown, Mandan, Minot, Park River and Williston also have been national tournament hosts.

New Hampshire has also hosted the ALWS six times — in Manchester in 1932, 1942, 1968, 1976 and 1977 and Keene in 1963. Laconia also has been a national tournament host.

California has hosted the ALWS two times, in San Diego in 1941 and Los Angeles in 1947. Anaheim, Fairfield, Fullerton, Lodi, Long Beach, Napa, Oakland, Ontario, Palo Alto, Stockton and Union City also have been national tournament hosts.

Montana hosted the ALWS at Miles City in 1943. Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Glacier, Great Falls, Helena and Missoula also have been national tournament hosts.

Louisiana has hosted the ALWS three times, all in New Orleans (1933, 1937 and 1984). Baton Rouge, Crowley, Gonzales, Lafayette, Minden, Ponchatoula and Shreveport also have been national tournament hosts.

Connecticut has hosted the ALWS twice, both in Middletown, in 1988 and 1999. Bridgeport, Bristol, Hartford, Manchester, New Britain, Torrington and Waterbury also have been national tournament hosts.

Illinois has hosted the ALWS three times — in Chicago in 1928 and 1934 and Alton in 2000. Arlington Heights, Bartonville, Belleville, Bellwood, Bloomington, Canton, Charleston, Danville, Edwardsville, Fairview Heights, Mattoon, Moline, Murphysboro, Peoria, Quincy and Springfield also have been national tournament hosts.

Which cities have hosted the most national tournaments?

Two have hosted 20 or more times — Manchester, N.H., with 27 events and Hastings, Neb., with 20.

In addition to hosting the ALWS five times, Manchester hosted 10 pre-1960 regionals, four sectionals, one national semifinal and seven Northeast regionals.

Hastings hosted the ALWS four times as well as three pre-1960 regionals, eight sectionals, one national semifinal and four Central Plains regionals.

Other cities that have hosted more than 14 national events are Sumter, S.C. (18); Memphis, Tenn. (17); Shelby, N.C. (16); New Orleans (15); Billings, Mont. (14) and Boyertown, Pa. (14).