Strong September for Memphis economy

By Ben Watson - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Several large events this Labor Day weekend brought thousands of visitors and millions of dollars into the Bluff City.
Memphians and Memphis businesses have plenty to cheer about this month.

Fans showing up for big football games this weekend and next will pump millions of tourist dollars into the city.

"The Memphis-Ole Miss game, probably 20,000 plus people from out of town for this event," said Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau President Kevin Kane. "Next weekend, the Southern Heritage classic, probably 30,000 people from out of town."

In addition, 25,000 people are expected to attend the National Baptist Convention in Memphis this week.
And thousands more are making their way to town for the Delta Fair.

All these events are turning a usually-slow September tourist season into what could become a record year for local businesses.

"Our hotels are sold out, our restaurants will be full," said Kane. "I just left Beale Street, and you couldn't move on Beale Street at 11 o'clock on a Sunday morning. It just doesn't get any better than that."

Bar owner Silky Sullivan says his and other businesses on Beale are seeing a lot more customers than usual..

"This is like the fourth of July, New Year's Eve, Liberty Bowl...all put together," he said.

Sullivan says any city in the country would give anything for the number of tourists that will visit Memphis this month. And the hope is that many of those visitors will have such a good time, they'll come back for more.

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