Charlotte, N.C. – The Charlotte Sports Foundation (CSF) today announced that the 2018 Belk College Kickoff resulted in an economic impact of almost $40 million to the Charlotte community. The game took place on Saturday, September 1 at 3:30 p.m. A crowd of 66,793 packed Bank of America Stadium to witness the first ever matchup of West Virginia University and the University of Tennessee, with the Mountaineers prevailing 40-14.
The Belk College Kickoff had a total economic impact of $38.8 million, with $21 million in direct visitor spending. Of the total attendance, over 53,000 people (80%) traveled more than 50 miles to Charlotte for the game. More than 48,000 stayed overnight, which generated nearly 42,000 hotel room bookings.
In addition, the game was televised nationally by CBS and was seen by over 2.6 million television viewers.
“We are very proud to announce that the 2018 Belk College Kickoff resulted in a substantial economic impact on Charlotte,” said Will Webb, Executive Director of the Charlotte Sports Foundation. “Not only did we have the honor of hosting the first-ever meeting between West Virginia and Tennessee, but we were able to spotlight the city of Charlotte nationally on CBS. Having a positive economic impact on the Charlotte community is one of the cornerstones of the Charlotte Sports Foundation. The significance of almost $40 million in economic impact, that would not have been realized otherwise, is truly a win for everyone involved with the Belk College Kickoff.”
“The mission of the Charlotte Sports Foundation is to improve the quality of life and drive economic impact for the Charlotte region,” stated Johnny Harris, Board Chairman of the Charlotte Sports Foundation. “With a $40 million impact and 67,000 fans in attendance, including 53,000 from out of town, we have certainly done that with the Belk College Kickoff.”
The Charlotte Sports Foundation, a 501(c)(3), works to create, secure and operate high-caliber athletic events such as the Belk College Kickoff, the ACC Football Championship and the Belk Bowl. These three games, and ancillary events, attract tens of thousands of fans to Charlotte annually and had an economic impact of approximately $76 million for the local economy in 2017.
CSF’s future regular season football games scheduled include; the Universities of North Carolina and South Carolina (2019 & 2023). Wake Forest University and the University of Notre Dame (2020), and East Carolina University and Appalachian State University (2021). The Foundation also provides support for recruitment and operation of other local sporting events, including the 2019 NBA All-Star Game and 2019 ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament, and spearheads Charlotte’s continued growth as a preferred host for premier national and regional sporting events.
CSF was created in the spring of 2013 as a combined entity of Charlotte’s two primary sports development groups, Charlotte Collegiate Football and the Charlotte Regional Sports Commission. It’s origins can be traced to the vision of Charlotte civic leaders after the very successful hosting of the 1994 NCAA Men’s Final Four.
The Board of Directors who guides the Charlotte Sports Foundation boasts a dynamic roster of top Charlotte civic and business leaders. Please visit www.CharlotteSports.org for more information.
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