PHOENIX — The Arizona Cardinals spent August in Flagstaff for almost a quarter-century before moving training camp to Glendale’s University of Phoenix Stadium.
Some predicted that Flagstaff’s economy would suffer from the loss, but the city didn’t just survive, it actually saw a big boost in tourism dollars.
Spending at restaurants and bars was up almost 12 percent in August from the same time last year and hotel bookings jumped 7 percent from last August.
Heidi Hansen with the Flagstaff Convention and Visitors Bureau said an aggressive ad campaign in the Valley helped.
“We took out ads on the light rail and we did King Kong bus wraps that are moving billboards,” Hansen said. “People came up and enjoy Snowbowl Sky Ride and do the Flagstaff Extreme where they climb and zip line in the trees. Lowell Observatory and other attractions were also very popular.”
Flagstaff also ran an ad campaign in Las Vegas.
Hansen said the city did take a tourism hit during the government shutdown but the big moneymaking ski season is just weeks away.
“(Arizon Snowbowl) can make snow now, so that is going to be a big push,” she said.
Mayor Jerry Nabours said the city enjoyed having the Cardinals in town “but as a financial impact on Flagstaff, it doesn’t matter if they’re here or not.”
Nabours also pointed out that Northern Arizona University is enjoying a strong football season. There have been a few home sellout crowds, which is pumping even more dollars into the local economy.
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food