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Cross-country events will bring $10M boost to Tallahassee

Major championships set to come this Fall
Posted at 6:19 PM, Sep 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-07 18:19:39-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Cross-country events will bring a $10 million boost to the City of Tallahassee during a time when businesses could really use the support.

“The last couple of years has been tough on local businesses so we see ourselves as a big partner in getting folks back on their feet and running again.”

Ryan Zornes, the Senior Director of Sales and Sports with Visit Tallahassee, knows what an impact this will have on the community. Starting next week, the city will host seven major cross-country events through December at Apalachee Regional Park including the NCAA Cross-Country Division I National Championship.

With events expected to bring 35,000 people to the Capital City. Giving businesses like Bird's something to be excited about this Fall.

Courtney, an employee at Bird's Aphrodisiac Oyster Shack said, “we’ll definitely see increased volume it will help pay holiday bonuses and keep things going well.”

These events also highlight just how much the park (referred to some as ARP) expanded with $2 million in recent improvements.

"Watching it grow over the years with a unified vision has given us the platform to host these large caliber meets which help the economy, it helps the community, it helps Florida State’s recruiting programs,” Zornes said.

To help keep businesses coming to the area year-round, Visit Tallahassee and Florida State University worked together to host those meets during times when the Noles football team is on the road.

Joe Piotrowski is the Sports Director for Visit Tallahassee, and says weekends like these can go a long way in helping highlight our local businesses and events happening in the future... that could bring visitors back to town.

“Every time they have a great interaction with a hotel here, a great interaction with one of our restaurants, it just clicks and it makes that decision easier to say we should go back and experience more,” Piotrowski said.

The first event scheduled at Apalachee Regional Park is the FSU Cross-Country Open on September 17. The NCAA championships will happen in November.