Hockey Tournament Has Big Economic Impact In Fort Wayne
By LISA RYAN | WBOI
About 10,000 people from the United Kingdom, Canada and more than 30 different states are in Fort Wayne for a 12-day roller hockey tournament.
The competition runs through August 7 in the SportONE Parkview Icehouse.
It’s bringing an estimated $3 million dollars into the city. Some of that money comes from hotel bookings and meal purchases, but it also comes from families attending baseball games, visiting places like the zoo and Science Central, and buying goods like back-to-school clothes and even cars.
The economic impact is estimated by Visit Fort Wayne, the tourism agency that recruited the roller hockey tournament to the city. The competition is called State Wars Hockey, and it’s expanded outside of the U.S. to include 18 teams from Canada and 7 teams from the U.K.
A spokeswoman for Visit Fort Wayne says only 6 of the 274 teams are from Indiana, so most of the tourism money is coming from other states and countries.
Tim McManus is the president of State Wars. He says he hopes to bring the tournament back to Fort Wayne in a few years because it’s a welcoming city.
“The area definitely fully embraces our tournament, the restaurants, the hotels, the attractions, everyone just seems to really embrace what we have going on here,” he said.
The games are divided up into different age categories and divisions. Some participants are professional hockey players, while some players are younger than 6 years old.
The tournament is free and open to the public.