Impact of Spring Training Lasts All Year long

February 20, 2013
Government Affairs, Cactus League Association
Jeff Meyer, Vice President

Everyone knows what happens at spring training baseball parks around the Valley in March. Few residents know how much happens at these same facilities the rest of the year.

A recent survey of the Valley’s ten ballparks showed together they generate more than $210 million a year in economic activity not directly related to spring training. That’s on top of the $422 million contributed by Cactus League activities in February and March.

Those of us who work at the ballparks or help drive events to the facilities know most of them are busy twelve months of the year.

The Major League teams keep them buzzing in the spring, late summer and in the fall, with spring training, rookie league games and the Arizona Fall League.

But between those “seasons,” hundreds of adult and youth baseball leagues use the facilities paying rent in the form of tournament registrations. Thousands of players and their families fly or drive here from across the United States, staying in our hotels, eating in our restaurants and shopping in our stores.

Some ballparks host concerts, July 4th celebrations, high school and college graduations, and even car shows. All of these events generate revenue for the Cactus League communities and return value to the taxpayers who’ve invested in the ballparks and training facilities.

Indeed, spring training gets most of the attention when casual observers think about any of the 10 ballparks around the Valley. But as we see from the latest economic impact data, they are hard at work all year long generating a solid return on our investment as one of Arizona’s original and most important components of the tourism industry.