ASHWAUBENON (WFRV)–Day two of the WIAA’s Girls State Basketball Tournament is well underway and already thousands of visitors have come out to the Resch Center to cheer on the girls.
Cecelia Jacobs, who has a grand niece in the tournament said, “It’s exciting that so many people are supporting all the teams and everything.”
The three day event is likely to draw in 40,000 people. But it’s not just the Resch Center that’s reaping all the benefits, the droves of people are boosting business for the local economy.
Brad Toll, the CEO of Greater Green Bay Convention said “A lot of people will be out shopping in our stores, buying gas from our gas station, visiting a lot of the attractions in the area in between games so it really spreads throughout the entire economy.”
Between ticket sales and booking hotel rooms, Toll estimates about $3 million will be made this weekend. And right next door at the Veterans Memorial Arena and Shopko Hall is the 50th annual Home and Garden Sale. Between the two events, the Stadium District is buzzing with business.
Terry Charles, the spokesperson for PMI Entertainment Group, said “The more stuff that’s going on draws people. If someone’s going to the home and garden show or the basketball tournament there’s a good chance they’ll go to the other event as well.”
Home and Garden Show Vendor, Bruce Steinhauer with Steinies Water Garden, said he’s been coming to the show for years. With the tournament going on next door, he says it’s been great for the show.
“The shows been really good. I think the basketball tournament helped it out too. You see a lot of matching t-shirts and logos coming through.” He said.
With all the excitement around the Resch Center, business owners hope it not only draws the WIAA to continue hosting the tournament here but it will entice visitors to come back to Green Bay.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to showcase everything in the Green Bay area and we hope it means return trips,” Toll said.
The tournament continues through Saturday evening.