Hotel Online  Special Report



John Q. Hammons Tosses First Pitch at Game Two of World Series; 
Has for Many Decades Generously Supported Sports
While Developing 175 Hotels
SPRINGFIELD, Mo., and DETROIT – October 24, 2006 – Mr. John Q. Hammons, age 87, commemorated a lifelong dream when he threw the ceremonial first pitch at game two of the 2006 World Series on Sunday, Oct. 22 at Comerica Park in Detroit.  Mr. Hammons tossed to former Cardinals star and current Detroit Tigers first base coach Andy Van Slyke.  A hotel legend and sports enthusiast, Mr. Hammons was invited to participate in the memorable event in recognition for his many decades of generous support to sports and to Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts (, the “Official Hotel of Major League Baseball.”   Mr. Hammons is founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Springfield, Mo.-based John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC, the nation’s leading independent builder, developer, owner and manager of upscale, full-service hotels, resorts and suites (   

“I would say that next to building hotels, sports are my favorite hobby,” said Mr. Hammons, who has developed 175 hotels over his 48 years in the hospitality industry.  “Being a part of a World Series game is a lifelong dream I’ve had since I was a boy growing up in the Midwest.  I appreciate both Holiday Inn and Major League Baseball for extending such an unforgettable moment to me.” 

Mr. Hammons entered the hotel industry in 1958 with Mr. Roy E. Winegardner when they purchased their first 10 Holiday Inn franchises from Mr. Kemmons Wilson, creator of the Holiday Inn brand.  Together they formed Winegardner & Hammons Incorporated (WHI) of Cincinnati, a hotel development company, in 1961.  By the late 1960s, WHI had constructed nearly three-dozen Holiday Inn hotels.  Mr. Hammons then formed John Q. Hammons Hotels in 1969, now known as John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC. 

Mr. Hammons isn’t your typical baseball fan, and his affinity for baseball goes beyond loyally attending the Cincinnati Reds Spring training for the last 50 years.  Mr. Hammons was instrumental to bringing Minor League Baseball to Springfield, Mo.  In March 2005, he opened his 68th Holiday Inn in conjunction with the Double-A Minor League Springfield Cardinals’ first game at Hammons Field, the $32 million stadium developed and owned by Mr. Hammons.  In addition to his contributions to baseball, Mr. Hammons has donated millions to open sports halls of fame and to develop arenas at colleges and universities across the country. 

“Mr. Hammons is a visionary that Holiday Inn founder Kemmons Wilson respected as do we,” said Mr. Mark Snyder, senior vice president, brand management, Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts in the Americas.  “Mr. Hammons’ passion, vision and reputation for exceeding quality standards have made his hotels among the top performers in their category.  He lives to create hotels that provide exceptional guest experiences.  We want to deliver an extraordinary experience to him in return.” 

Recently Mr. Hammons’ contributions to the Holiday Inn brand were recognized when he became the third recipient of the Kemmons Wilson Service Award from IAHI, the Owner’s Association of InterContinental Hotels Group, parent company of Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts.  Among his other hotel industry accolades are HOTELS magazine’s Corporate Hotelier of the World, Hilton Hotels Corporation’s Connie Award, and several Developer of the Year awards from the Embassy Suites Hotel brand.  Additionally, Mr. Hammons will be honored at the Americas Lodging Investment Summit with the ALIS Lifetime Achievement Award in January 2007 in Los Angeles. 

John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC boasts 70 hotels, totaling more than 15,000 rooms and over 1.8 million square feet of meeting space.  Approximately one fifth of the company’s properties are flagged Holiday Inn.  Known for his unmatched ability to pick the right market at the right time to build for optimum results, Mr. Hammons has more than $1.4 billion in the new construction pipeline.   

History of Mr. Hammons’ Contribution to Sports 

  • In 1976, Mr. Hammons provided the funding for the construction of the 10,000-seat Hammons Student Center on the campus of Southwest Missouri State University, which serves as home to the Bears and Lady Bears athletic teams. 
  • In 1989, Mr. Hammons developed Highland Springs Country Club in Springfield, Mo., one of the premier facilities in the Midwest and home to a Robert Trent Jones II golf course.   Through the John Q. Hammons Foundation, Highland Springs Country Club serves as host to the annual Price Cutter Charity Championship on the PGA’s BUY.COM TOUR.  Throughout the tournament’s 11-year history, it has raised more than a million dollars for children’s charities throughout the Ozarks. 
  • In 1990, he developed Verdae Greens Golf Club in Greenville, S.C., and in 1998, the Tiffany Greens Golf Club in Kansas City, Mo.  Mr. Hammons is credited with keeping the PGA’s SENIOR TOUR in Kansas City, Mo., and the TD Waterhouse Championship presented by Bayer-Advantage for four consecutive years. 
  • In 1992, Mr. Hammons was inducted into the Missouri Basketball Hall of Fame. 
  • In 1994, he donated the land and building to house the existing Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mo.  Regarded as one of the elite halls of fame in the country, the facility features the John Q. Hammons Library. 
  • In 2000, Mr. Hammons was inducted into the Missouri Valley Conference Hall of Fame. 
  • In 2003, John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts became the title sponsor of the John Q. Hammons Classic, part of the LPGA tour in Tulsa, Okla. 
  • In 2004, Mr. Hammons provided complete funding for the construction of the 10,000-seat Hammons Field, home of the Double-A Minor League Springfield Cardinals and Missouri State University Bears.   
  • In 2005, he provided funding for the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame, which allowed final construction and furnishing of gallery images, signage and displays on both the first and second floors, as well as external signage for the facility. The entrance pavilion was named John Q. Hammons Plaza. 
  • In 2006, he contributed $30 million toward the construction of the 12,000-seat JQH Arena at Missouri State University. 
  • In 2006, John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts announced it would sponsor the LPGA Northwest Arkansas Championship in Rogers, Ark. 
About Holiday Inn 
Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts is part of the InterContinental Hotels Group family of brands with global headquarters in the U.K. and Americas headquarters in Atlanta.  With more than 1,400 properties worldwide and nearly 1,000 in the U.S., Holiday Inn is the most recognized lodging brand in the world and certainly the most iconic. 

About John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC 
Springfield, Mo.-based John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC is the nation’s leading independent builder, developer, owner and manager of upscale, full-service hotels, resorts and suites, including:  Embassy Suites Hotels, Renaissance, Marriott, Radisson, Residence Inn, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Holiday Inn and Courtyard by Marriott brands.  With 70 hotels strategically located near demand generators, such as state capitals, universities, airports, corporate headquarters or office parks in secondary and tertiary markets, John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts’ properties are dominant in their markets.  Over the course of his impressive career in the hotel business, Mr. Hammons has developed 175 hotels.  

Photo by Bob Linder 


Scott Tarwater
John Q. Hammons Hotels & Resorts, LLC
(417) 873-3591 

Also See: John Q. Hammons Makes $25 million Commitment to Missouri State University to be Used for a $60 Million 12,000 Seat Campus Arena / February 2006
John Q. Hammons Starts Contruction on 120-room Holiday Inn Express® in Springfield, Mo., His Fifth Springfield Property; Development of the Property Coincides With Opening Day of Nearby Hammons Field Baseball Stadium / March 2004

To search Hotel Online data base of News and Trends Go to Hotel.Online Search

Home | Welcome! | Hospitality News | Classifieds | Catalogs & Pricing | Viewpoint Forum | Ideas/Trends
Please contact Hotel.Online with your comments and suggestions.