MERIC NEWS LETTER

Sports Atmosphere in Missouri Big Help to Economic Development

Professional sports teams in Missouri strengthen our state's national and regional image-both to television viewers and to those who attend sporting events in person.

Conventional wisdom in economic development is that a better, higher-profile image (which can be cultivated through hosting sports franchises and events) attracts more tourists, businesses, residents, and expands the tax base of a state.

One major sporting event alone, like the Super Bowl or All-Star Game, brings tens of thousands of visitors to a region and tens of millions of dollars in positive fiscal impact to the host state. Missourians benefit personally from pro sports by being able to follow and enjoy the home teams and the statewide pride we can all share from that.

Fortunately, Missouri is known for having a strong "sports atmosphere."

St. Louis was recently ranked as the 19th best overall sports city in the United States by Sporting News magazine in its 2005 annual review.

Kansas City ranked 36th overall of the 388 cities in the U.S. with at least an NCAA Division I basketball team, minor league baseball team, site of a training camp, or host to a major sports event.

St. Louis was ranked as the number one city for Major League Baseball in 2005.

The ranking considers "sports atmosphere", putting a heavy premium on regular-season records and post-season success along with fan fervor.  

Fan fervor is measured in part by attendance as a percentage of venue capacity; fan knowledge; abundance of teams; stadium quality; ticket availability and prices; franchise ownership; and the marquee appeal of athletes.

Other Missouri cities in the rankings include Columbia at 89th, Springfield at 143rd, and Cape Girardeau at 180th.

So root, root, root for our Missouri teams and know that by doing so you are continuing to support future economic growth.
                                      

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