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Boise in national spotlight, aiming to become sports destination

(FILE)

The X-games and the NCAA basketball tournament are both coming to Boise in the next year.

So the question is, what impact will these nationally televised events can have on Boise's economy.

The simple answer is just about anything that brings people here from out of town is good for business, because those people need places to sleep, eat, and recreate.

The more complicated answer is sporting events in particular could fill boise hotel rooms on weekends, when they have much higher vacancy rates than during the work week.

Come June the X-games qualifier will pack rhodes skate park with some of the world's best skateboarders and bmx riders. It will also pack boise with plenty of tourists.

However, according to Boise officials what's more important are those watching at home.

"The X-games this june is gonna be on a world stage and people are going to see Boise in a completely different light than what they might've seen otherwise," said Mike Journee, a spokesman for the City of Boise.

Local businesses are also ready to capitalize on the skate competition.

At Caliente Salon just a block away from Rhodes Park. They know people coming for the X-games aren't looking for haircuts, but they've still got a plan.

"We're just going to rent out the parking spots," said Lyndell Tabler-Ulsh, "We're going to do an all day pass for each of the parking spots."

For Boise the chance to host sporting events like the X-games or a round of the NCAA Mens' Basketball Tournament is huge.

Not only does it bring in revenue but it creates that money at a time when Boise hotel are hardly ever full weekends.

According the Boise Chamber of Commerce that's not just an economic boost, but one which comes with little downside for locals.

"So it may not even appear that there's a bunch more people here, but there is. It's just they're coming 7 days a week instead of 4," said Carrie Westergard, head of the Convention and Visitors Bureau of the Chamber of Commerce.

The Westergard said the chamber has got a lot in the works in the way of bringing even more events to Boise.

Which they think will get easier with each successful event here, because according to Westergard, Boise is quickly getting a repuation as a city that is easy to work with.

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