MEDFORD, Ore. -- Medford Parks and Recreation Department said although it had to cancel a tournament because of the smoke from all the wildfires in 2017 summer, US Cellular Community Park still saw a great year. The park generated nearly $11 million last year.
Medford Parks and Rec said US Cellular Park draws people from all over the West to compete in various sports tournaments and it shows in the numbers.
"We had 40 events, over $10.7 Million. This is the 4th consecutive year to reach over $10 million and it was the third highest in the history of the park," said City of Medford Parks and Recreation Facility Director Rich Rosenthal.
The park opened in May of 2008 and it has generated more than of $90 million, which Rosenthal said indirectly impacts Medford’s economy. He said almost half of the money generated from 2017 came from the 845 visiting teams competing in tournaments. They spent an estimated amount of $4.3 million in local spending. That includes hotel stays. Inn at the Commons is just one of the hotels that said it has benefitted from US Cellular Community Park.
"People come to stay over the weekend, they bring their families. They stay by the pool. They dine at larks restaurant. It helps keep out hotel full all year long," said Inn at the Commons Sales Manager Courtney Toll.
"This is an engine of activity that brings people into the community. They're looking at places to stay and many of the hotels in the summer time during the tournaments that are offered are full," Rosenthal added.
The City of Medford is already looking forward to what 2018 will bring to the city. It hopes 2018 will be a record breaking year.