PUNTA GORDA/ENGLEWOOD BEACH, Fla. (April 12, 2019) – The Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor & Convention Bureau has released economic impact data for the 11th Annual Snowbird Baseball Classic held Feb. 15 – March 22, 2019 throughout Charlotte County. Commissioned research suggests 10,570 attendees who live outside of Charlotte County generated an estimated $8,692,300 in direct spending benefiting Charlotte County, businesses, and citizens. When the increased business spending and increased household spending resulting from tourism dollars are factored with direct spending, the total economic impact is an estimated $13,299,200. The five-week tournament attracted 19 NCAA Division I and 25 Division III collegiate teams. 

“The Snowbird Baseball Classic has grown to be the largest spring baseball gathering of Division I schools in the country and is attracting top Division III teams, too,” said Steve Partington, Tournament Director of the Snowbird Baseball Classic. He added, “The tournament’s success depends on the strong relationships with local partners which include the communities of Charlotte and Sarasota Counties and the Florida Sports Foundation. With their support, the tournament continues to introduce players, coaches, parents, and spectators who support the local economy by spending money in local restaurants, shops, attractions, and hotels.”

Total attendance which included in County and out of Charlotte County attendees is estimated at 13,120 which includes spectators and 1,820 coaches, players, trainers and other staff. Out-of-town visitors stayed an average of 7.3 nights and occupied more than 23,300 room nights in Charlotte County accommodations.  

The Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor & Convention Bureau commissioned Downs & St. German Research of Tallahassee to conduct research and calculate the estimated economic impact figures. Methodology in gathering data consisted of interviews with 144 Snowbird Baseball Classic attendees, event attendance, Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach VCB visitor tracking studies, and a tourism database at Downs & St. Germain Research.  

Economic impact is determined on the spending by non-Charlotte County residents who stayed in paid lodging, dined in local restaurants, purchased groceries, utilized transportation such as rental cars, visited attractions, event admission, made purchases in shops, enjoyed entertainment, and spent money on other tourism-related expenses. 

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Credit: PureFlorida.com
Caption: The 11th Annual Snowbird Baseball Classic attracted 44 NCAA collegiate teams and generated an estimated $13.3 million in economic impact for Charlotte County. 

Located halfway between Tampa and Naples on the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast, Punta Gorda /Englewood Beach is a charming collection of nine coastal communities surrounding the state’s second largest harbor. Florida’s premier year-round eco-tourism destination, the area offers a pristine unspoiled beauty. In 2014, Port Charlotte was named the top “U.S. Best Value Destination” by Trivago (the world’s largest online hotel search site), and the Charlotte Sports Park, spring training home of the Tampa Bay Rays, was voted “Best Spring Training Facility” by readers of USA TODAY. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts, Punta Gorda / Englewood Beach has been named one of SAIL magazine’s “10 Greatest Places to Sail in the United States,” ranked by Golf Digest as “Third Best Place to Live and Play Golf in America,” and rated by MONEY magazine as one of the “Best Places to Live in the South.” Englewood was named second of the Top Ten emerging travel destinations in the U.S. by TripAdvisor.com. The area is served by five airports: The Punta Gorda Airport (PGD) with private and charter air service, Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ), Southwest Florida International Airport, Ft. Myers, (RSW), St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) and Tampa International Airport (TPA). For more information on visiting Punta Gorda / Englewood Beach visit http://PureFlorida.com or call 1-800-652-6090.