Local News

Big Sports Bring Big Business to the Triangle

Posted April 6, 1999 7:00 a.m. EDT

— Big sports are big business, and in the coming months, the Triangle will reap the rewards.

Federation Cup Tennisjoined theSpecial OlympicsWorld Summer Games and theU.S. OpenGolf Tournament as premiere events coming to the area.

The Raleigh Racquet Club will hosts the Federation Cup in just ten days. While many people are really excited, even those that choose not to attend one of the huge sporting events, will still benefit.

North Carolina tourism leaders believe these international competitions will bring more top name sports and entertainment events to the area.

"And that's what we're always trying to get Raleigh's name out there," says Dave Heinl, president of the Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau. "And so the more you get the advertising out in that way, the better chance you get all of the other events; entertainment, sports, even company relocations."

The events also generate tax money to pay for services like roads and schools. Overall, the three major competitions are expected to have a direct economic impact approaching $300 million.

"The Special Olympics itself, they estimate around $85 million," says Gordon Clapp, director of N.C. Tourism. "But again you don't know what the residual effects are. The same thing holds true for the U.S. Open where they estimate about $200 million."

So even though some residents will not make the drive to Pinehurst, the U.S. Open and other big sporting events coming to the area will contribute to their quality of life.