Games will mean big money for Southaven - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Games will mean big money for Southaven

SOUTHAVEN, MS (WMC-TV) - The fields at Snowden Grove park in Southaven were quiet Tuesday, but this past weekend signaled the start of a very busy season of tournaments there, not to mention a highly profitable time for both city and county.

"This will be a huge influx of people coming into town," said Kim Terrell, executive director of the DeSoto County Tourism Association. "They'll be staying in our hotels and eating in our restaurants. They'll be spending time and money with the children doing other things besides playing ball.

Baseball and softball tournaments are booked from now until October at the park. Estimated attendance totals will exceed over 100,000 people, which means sold out hotel rooms and crowded eateries.

Ashley Atkins, sales manager at the Hilton Garden Inn, said everyone benefits.

"We book up during the weekends, and we're thankful for Snowden Grove being right down the road, because all the hotels book up and it really brings a lot of business to this area."

How much business? According to yearly estimates, anywhere from $8 million to $10 million countywide. With games weekly from March thru October, sports like softball are increasingly becoming a more family-friendly activity.

"You may not play ball, go to the beach, or whatever you might want to have done," Mayor Greg Davis said. "So we're seeing numbers of family members increase as they travel. You may even see a couple families carpool."

Park officials said bookings are up again this year, and several tournaments will be played at facilities in other areas of DeSoto County, including Hernando and Horn Lake.

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