Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Pro Sports

June 4, 2014

Saints arrive at The Greenbrier on July 24

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS — The New Orleans Saints will come marching in to The Greenbrier resort on July 24 for training camp, the resort announced on Tuesday.

Camp will continue in the West Virginia mountains until Aug. 13, with 20 practices scheduled. A scrimmage is planned for Aug. 2.

On July 24, players will report for physicals and meetings and hold their strength and conditioning tests. All Saints activity on that day is closed to the public. All other training camp workouts at The Greenbrier will be open to fans and media.

The Saints begin on-field workouts in a non-padded practice session on July 25 from 8:50 to 11:40 a.m., followed by an hour-long walkthrough starting at 4:30.

Resort owner Jim Justice commissioned new training camp facilities which were custom-built for the Saints.

“We are really probably 3 or 4 days ahead of schedule on everything,” said Justice, during a press conference on Tuesday for The Greenbrier Classic. “That is what we want to do, stay a little bit ahead of schedule, all that is good.”

The facilities include three practice fields (two natural turf and one synthetic grass), and a 55,000-square-foot multi-purpose building equipped with meeting rooms, weight rooms, locker rooms, training and physical therapy accommodations, and kitchen and dining facilities.

“We are so excited to welcome the New Orleans Saints to The Greenbrier this summer,” Justice said in a news release. “There is no place like West Virginia in the summertime, and we look forward to introducing the Saints players, staff and fans to our extraordinary resort facilities ... on our 10,000 private acres.”

All training camp practices are subject to short notice changes and adjustments based on weather and-or football operations decisions.

Following each practice, Saints players will sign autographs for fans, though autographs are not guaranteed. Available players will sign autographs if weather, time and other circumstances permit.

Fans are welcome to take photos of the players during training camp, but video is prohibited. Saints staff may request at any time that attendees cease using those devices.

Media and fan alerts, updates and schedule changes will be made daily on once training camp starts or by accessing @Saints on Twitter or by going to neworleanssaints.

Admission to the workouts is on a first-come, first-served basis. Limited bleacher seating is available at The Greenbrier. There is no reserved seating.

There is no admission charge for watching training camp practice. An admission ticket will be issued to each person upon entrance to the football facility. The ticket will also enable fans to access to The Greenbrier property activities and include assorted special discounts.

Parking for spectators will be located just east of The Greenbrier in locations easily accessible to the public. Free parking is provided by the city of White Sulphur Springs.

Spectators will then board on-site transportation for the three- to five-minute ride to the practice facility, with a fee of $5 per adult and $2 for children under 12.

Personal vehicles, walk-ins, and private buses or motor coaches are not permitted to access the facility.

The Saints, coached by Sean Payton, won the 2009 Super Bowl. Last season they finished 11-5, losing to eventual Super Bowl champion Seattle in the divisional playoffs.

Drew Brees, the team’s quarterback, is an eight-time Pro Bowler and a two-time AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year.

Justice posed several ideas on Tuesday for other uses for the football facility, but those can wait for now. After all, the Saints are coming, and soon.

“It could be anything, we could have a soccer deal here, we could have a WVU-Marshall deal here,” Justice said. “We could have an in-state school, whether it be West Virginia State or whomever, play a real game here.

“There are lots of things, high school playoffs, anything could happen, lots of stuff when you think about it. At the same time the focus is the Saints, and nothing but the Saints.”

—Daily Telegraph sports edtior Brian Woodson and Cam Huffman, sports editor of The Register-Herald contributed to this report

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