Friday, January 4, 2013

Do Professional Sports Teams Benefit The Locals?

Are Lockouts Beneficial To Local Economies?

I saw this on Yahoo Post Game and found it interesting. I have often wondered if a professional sports team really benefits the local economy and have come to the conclusion that any benefit may be minimal at best.

Of course there is some local benefit - the people who do real work at the venue do rely on the extra income that is generated game time. But what about the local economy as a whole?

Take the NFL for instance. Are there really that many fans who come to the game from out of town? A few to be sure, but for the most part it is the locals that show up. They spend their money, stimulate a small segment of the economy, and go home. As far as I can tell, the other major professional sports are little different. Local folks supporting the home town club, with a sprinkling of tourists and camp followers.

Contrast that with the college football. There are quite a number of teams whose fans "travel well." If you have ever been to a KSU away game you will see a sea of purple. These people travel, rent hotel rooms, spend money of food, etc. etc. I once went to a Rice/Hawaii game and there was bus load after bus load of Hawaii fans coming to cheer their team on (to defeat as I recall). All had to spend some money somewhere along the line in the Houston area.

I don't subscribe to the notion that a pro sports team may be a drag on the local economy, as the author of the article seems to, but I don't see much more than minimal benefit.

Anyway read the article and see what you think.

On a side note, there may be one exception to the rule and that is the sports teams (Saints in particular) in the city of New Orleans. NOLA is a destination city for tourism and at all Saints games there are curious tourists and die hard followers of the opposing team. For that city the Saints are a tourist attraction and it would be detrimental to the economy should they fold, move, etc.

An NFL lockout, strike, whatever would hurt the NOLA area economy. Most other cities? Probably not so much.

1 comment:

AVON Kelley Lang said...
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