Updated 03/15/2013 05:53 PM
State basketball tournament gives Glens Falls huge economic boost
A major sporting event is bringing some serious money into the City of Glens Falls this weekend. As YNN's Erin Moran found out, it's this time of the year that local businesses look forward to the most.
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GLENS FALLS, N.Y. -- “The middle of March, everyone knows that it's basketball time in Glens Falls,” said Peter Aust, President of the Adirondack Regional Chamber of Commerce.
For the 32nd year in a row, the New York State Public High School Basketball Tournament is back at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
Aust said, “It's become such a major economic boost to the Glens Falls region.”
Aust believes the tournament has become an iconic event for Glens Falls and it has business owners seeing dollar signs.
“The people who come spend a lot of money. It's in the tens of millions of dollars that this tournament brings to this area over the course of three days, Friday, Saturday, Sunday weekend, and it makes a big, big difference to us here,” he said.
Between visitors needing somewhere to eat, sleep, and have some down time in between games, many businesses benefit from the extra foot traffic.
“Generally it's a pretty slow time of year, February, March, April time for restaurants, so it's very, very good to the city,” said Rick Davidson, co-owner of Davidson Brothers Restaurant and Brewery.
“This can be a quiet time of year sometimes because we're in between seasons right now, we're just happy to have everyone,” said Matt Strickland, manager at Fountain Square Outfitters.
The tournament in Glens Falls is a win-win, not only for the businesses, but for the visitors, as well.
“The visitors, the visiting teams, the coaches, everybody that is part of this tournament feels welcome. They want to feel safe, secure, know that it's an easy city to navigate through and Glens Falls provides that,” said Aust.
“The people that come, they are very supportive of the local businesses and they're very, very good to us,” said Davidson.
It's the reason businesses in Glens Falls hope this tournament calls Glens Falls home for decades to come.