2010 Cardinals camp brought $10 million to local economy

The Arizona Cardinals three-week training camp at Northern Arizona University directly contributed nearly $7 million to the local economy this year and had a total impact of nearly $10 million, a new report by NAU’s Rural Policy Institute shows.

The report also says that the Cardinals camp was responsible for creating 122 local jobs.

“The economic impact is impressive, particularly in light of the short-term duration of the camp,” said assistant dean Wayne Fox, who prepared the report with Cheryl Cothran, director of NAU’s Arizona Hospitality Research and Resource Center. “They also are conservative as there are often items in studies like this that are not readily measurable. In the Cardinals’ case, the national media exposure for NAU, Flagstaff and the region is undoubtedly significant.”

Fox said 38,200 people attended training camp sessions or the Red and White Scrimmage. Of those, 81 percent were out-of-town visitors, with more than half staying overnight. On average they spent $254 per person, per day during an average three-day stay. One-day visitors spent an average of $67 each per day.

Government revenues increased about $1.5 million, including $769,900 federal and $712,400 state revenues.

The report, titled “The Arizona Cardinals Training Camp 2010: Economic Impact on Coconino County,” was prepared for the city of Flagstaff and released last week. It measured spending by the Cardinals football team and out-of-town fans.

A similar economic impact study conducted in 2003 showed the Cardinals had a direct economic impact of about $2 million. “A fivefold increase in seven years is again impressive and appears to be an excellent long-term investment for the community,” Fox said.

The Arizona Cardinals have trained at NAU since the team moved to Arizona in 1988. The university and the team recently renewed their partnership with a three-year agreement that runs through the 2012 season.

“The numbers confirm that our partnership with the Arizona Cardinals is another way that Northern Arizona University contributes to the state’s economic development,” said NAU President John Haeger. “After two decades in Flagstaff, Cardinals’ training camp has become one of our time-honored traditions.”

Read the full report at http://www.franke.nau.edu/RPI/projects/CardinalsTrainingCamp_Final_12-8-2010.pdf.