Hoover sees economy boosted by sporting event tourism

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HOOVER, Ala. (WBRC) – Business is booming in Hoover after a busy weekend with the SEC baseball championship in town.

City manager Allan Rice said sports tourism is a major driver of Hoover’s economy, with high school, college and draft tournaments almost every weekend at the Hoover Met.

Rice said the SEC Baseball Championship and Regions Golf Tournament are their two biggest events and they saw 140,000 people at Hoover this weekend alone.

Rice said they are still waiting to see the dollar amount brought in by the two tournaments, but he said hotels and RV parks were full and local restaurants were packed all weekend. .

Rice said they expected the baseball tournament to bring in numbers similar to pre-COVID numbers, which in 2019 was $14 million spent citywide. Rice said major sporting events can also lead to greater economic growth at Hoover down the line.

“Some of these people are decision makers,” Rice said. “Some of them own their own businesses and many people can now work wherever they want. They could choose Hoover as their next location, which will add to our prospects for economic development in the future.

Rice said Hoover has hosted the SEC Baseball Championship for the past 22 years and they’ve already agreed to a few more years, but he believes it will become a long-term partnership after that.

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