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Small tournaments hosted in Sioux City help generate business

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"It's not just about us and we realize that it's about everyone in our city and we just want to be a support in any way that we possibly can."

Dustin Cooper, Executive Director, Arena Sports Academy.

SIOUX CITY (KTIV) - Small tournaments are starting to take place again at Siouxland businesses such as The Arena Sports Academy, The Siouxland Expo Center and the Tyson Events Center.

The restart of the tournaments means more people will be coming back to Sioux City again, providing a boost to local economy.

"It's been kind of a regeneration of life for us," said Tim Savona, General Manager, Tyson Events Center.

From facilities that hold events, to locally owned businesses, the pandemic has had an impact on Sioux City.

But now that small tournaments are starting to return, it means more people will be coming into town, who will be staying in the city, eating and shopping locally.

Leaders with the Tyson Events Center said it's great to be a part of the community and to see it rebound again.

"You know how do we communicate more to the hotels and the restaurants and say hey here's what's coming and here's what there is to get excited about. And for the people who maybe are feeling a little tied up at home, hey here's a way to go watch some high-caliber stuff whether it's a basketball tournament or volleyball tournament," he said. "But on top of all that our teams here in town you know our kids in Siouxland they're not traveling to Omaha and Sioux Falls or wherever. Those people are coming here so we get to show off our town our city," said Savona.

Dustin Cooper, Executive Director for the Arena Sports Academy said throughout the pandemic, the facilities have supported each other.

"It was a very challenging time for really about three or four months there but I really believe that that adversity that we all went through really truly did make us stronger," said Cooper.

Leaders with the Siouxland Expo Center said having facilities in town, not only helps bring people into the city, but also allows those who live here to participate.

"This is why we built this facility to be able to draw those types of events and boost the local economy. So we look forward to as we get through with the pandemic and have more opportunities," said Salvatore. "You know this is just our first year. The facility we already have some very high-profile events coming. We want to do more of that so we're excited about the opportunity and I think over the years it's just going to build and build and build," said Matt Salvatore, Parks and Recreation Director

Cooper said it's good to see families come through the door once again.

"If we can play some small role in helping boost our economy during this time and in the future, then that's who we want to be and that's what we want to do. We want to be the tip of the sword here," he said. "We're out trying to get events to come to Sioux City. We're selling Sioux City. Sioux City is awesome, it really is, and our objective is to not only get people to Sioux City once but to get them coming back for other events in the future," said Cooper.

Local businesses are also excited to see tournaments return.

The Milwaukee Wiener House has been in Sioux City for more than 100 years.

Owners of the restaurant hope they can be a stop for those people, who are coming into town.

They said the more things start to open up, the better for everyone locally.

"I'm excited for more sports activities for the youth in Sioux City, and the more people who come through, the better for us and all the rest of the mom and pop establishments in Sioux City," Mike Eliades, Co-Owner, Milwaukee Wiener House.

And when people come from out of town, sometimes they need a place to stay.

Managers with the Courtyard By Marriot in Downtown Sioux City said they were fully booked during a recent tournament.

"The more people who can come down to the Tyson Events Center, the arena, stay at our hotel and then visit the businesses down here, just generates more revenue, more publicity .And it's just an overall win-win for the city," said Matthew Robinson, General Manager.

Leaders with the facilities that host tournaments said they continue to keep COVID-19 safety measures in place.

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Emily Schrad

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