Indy lands huge volleyball event with $59M impact

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Indianapolis is expecting 15,000 athletes and 30,000 spectators for the 2016 USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships, expected to juice the local economy to the tune of nearly $60 million.

Indianapolis tourism officials announced Monday that the city had netted hosting duties for the event, set for the Indiana Convention Center on June 24-July 3, 2016.

“The city is a great destination for amateur athletics, and volleyball has a rich history of successful tournaments with tremendous support from the local area,” said USA Volleyball Senior Director Tom Pingel in a prepared release.

Organized by Colorado Springs-based USA Volleyball, the national championships attract a capped field of 1,264 teams. The tournament crowns 30 champions in age divisions ranging from 11 to 18.

The event almost certainly will be biggest event hosted by Indianapolis in 2016, in terms of the $59 million economic impact estimated by local tourism promotions group Visit Indy. For example, the Big Ten football championships and basketball tournaments typically generate no more than $15 million for the city.

The much-ballyhooed National Rifle Association national convention hosted by Indianapolis in April was estimated to generate about $55 million.

The 2014 GJNC is currently being held in Minneapolis. The 2015 GJNC will be held in New Orleans.


  • Rolls Royce
    Rolls Royce in Indianapolis does not do car manufacturing. They engineer planes and plane engines.
  • Event impacts
    I'm pretty familiar with how CVBs make their econ impact estimates. Most of them, I think Visit Indy included, hire 3rd party firms to develop algorithms where you plug in number of attendees, event days, hotel rooms, etc. and it generates a number. Minneapolis is hosting the current USA volleyball tournament and they estimated $60 million - http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/news/2014/06/26/volleyball-jr-national-championships-minneapolis.html. My guess is they and Visit Indy use the same or similar outside firm and New Orleans has some different methodology, or maybe New Orleans is the one that is wrong? Keep in mind these impacts figure not just the attendee spending but the event organizers too. USA Volleyball and their sponsors are surely spending a good amount of $ on the set-up costs (for something this size probably 3 days of set up and 1-2 days tear down labor for a huge crew of people), court rental, costs of officials, etc. Sponsors (think Adidas, Nike, etc.) also spend $ locally on promotional opptys, host special events, etc. and all that factors into impact. And probably travel costs to and from Indianapolis included, at least with air travel. (And if you think that shouldn't count, tell that to everyone who has a job at IND or is involved in the supply chain over there.)
  • RR
    "Complaining there are no car companies here? Did you forget that Rolls-Royce is one of the largest employers in Indy? How can you say Indy has abandoned the automotive industry?" Wow, just wow. You obviously have absolutely no clue as to what Rolls Royce does in Indianapolis/United States if you think it has anything at all with the automobile industry.
    • Honestly
      Do you guys honestly believe our local media is going to question the numbers that are spoonfed to them by the downtown mafia? Of course not, they are part of the downtown mafia. Spending 30 seconds with a calculator like some other people that have commented have done would easily show you these numbers are completely fabricated and have absolutely no basis in reality.
    • Agree on something and not be pessimistic
      I will agree to a point with earlier comments that $60 mil is a stretch, but I think we could all agree that there has to be some relatively large economic impact given the size and length of the event. It would be nice to see actual numbers from previous events. Also, let's all be proud that Visit Indy and other orgs and getting events in town. Most towns would kill for the number and size of events that Indy has seemed to regularly get in the last few years.
    • Show Us The Math
      I find it VERY difficult to believe that every competitor and spectator will have an economic impact of over $1,300.00 per person while in town for the event. Let's see the proof!!
    • $60 Million?
      Agree with Tony. There's absolutely no way this event comes closes to generating an economic impact of $60 million. Visit Indy completely fabricates these economic estimates and is never called out on it. When will the media in this town start doing some investigative journalism on the operations of Visit Indy? Does anyone ask why the estimated figure is so much lower next year for New Orleans ($23 million): "USA Volleyball is proud to announce the City of New Orleans will host the 2015 USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships (GJNC) June 23 to July 2 at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center, which is expected to bring an estimated economic impact of $23 million to the city. - 2014 USAV Girls' Junior Nationals Page - Like USAV on Facebook - Follow USAV on Twitter - Contact: Bill Kauffman The USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships attracts over 13,000 athletes and over 25,000 spectators annually. The tournament crowns 30 champions in age divisions ranging from 11 to 18. The event, showcasing the top talent from across the nation, also draws hundreds of college recruiters looking for the next stars for their programs. http://www.teamusa.org/USA-Volleyball/Features/2014/January/17/New-Orleans-to-Host-2015-USAV-Girls-Junior-Nationals
    • No events
      Would the people here be happier if we didn't bother to land ANY events?? The group that tries to lure events like this and the NRA convention is not even close to the same group assigned to lure companies to move to Indy. One has absolutely nothing to do with the other so why are they being compared as if they do? I guess we should just tear down the convention center because nobody here seems to want any events to use the space unless they will unleash hundreds of millions of dollars. Oh wait, that happened with the Super Bowl and people didn't want that to come here either. Complaining about handling security at a volleyball championship? Really? Complaining there are no car companies here? Did you forget that Rolls-Royce is one of the largest employers in Indy? How can you say Indy has abandoned the automotive industry?
    • Journalism tip
      Dear IBJ: Subjective and endorsing adjectives like "huge" don't belong in your headlines. That is all.
    • Trolls
      The only thing even remotely similar between the IBJ and The Star are the comments. It's clear, that like rats on a ship, the trolls have fled that dying paper to come here.
    • GJNC vs. NRA
      So the "much-ballyhooed" 55 million from the NRA doesn't rate like the "no-ballyhooed estimated 60 million" GJNC tournament. Please IBJ, your starting to report like the Indianapolis Star. As with pro sports teams, there is no way to calculated tangible benefits from any of these events; all estimates.
    • In a related development
      Mayor greg ballard today announced creation of an east side volleyball park so that indianapolis could become a national center of volleyball tornaments. Funding of the new volleyball facility would be provided br revenues from the cricket tournaments at the city's new cricket park
    • Dollars ??
      Just how many tax dollars are we going to spend to generate this alleged windfall?
    • ?juice the local economy
      As with anything of this magnitude, it is a blip in the ecomomy of Indianapolis and only boosts it for one week. Plus this does not include the cost of increased security, police and local law enforcement, etc. Wouldn't it be much better if a large company built a billion dollar facility near Indianapolis. Oh yes, this only seems to happen to non-Indianapolis cities with Honda, Toyota, Subaru, etc. Literally Indianapolis has no appeal to manufacturers of advanced engines, vehicles, etc. and has abandoned automated industry on a massive scale. Indy isn't even in the list, but Fort Wayne, South Bend, Kokomo, Lafayette, Columbus, Princeton, and others are. Seems rather odd that Indianapolis doesn't attract a billion dollar facility like Toyota, Honda, Cummins, Catarpillar, etc. Almost like a don't come here sign is somehow part of the city limits in Indianapolis.

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      1. I am so impressed that the smoking ban FAILED in Kokomo! I might just move to your Awesome city!

      2. way to much breweries being built in indianapolis. its going to be saturated market, if not already. when is enough, enough??

      3. This house is a reminder of Hamilton County history. Its position near the interstate is significant to remember what Hamilton County was before the SUPERBROKERs, Navients, commercial parks, sprawling vinyl villages, and acres of concrete retail showed up. What's truly Wasteful is not reusing a structure that could still be useful. History isn't confined to parks and books.

      4. To compare Connor Prairie or the Zoo to a random old house is a big ridiculous. If it were any where near the level of significance there wouldn't be a major funding gap. Put a big billboard on I-69 funded by the tourism board for people to come visit this old house, and I doubt there would be any takers, since other than age there is no significance whatsoever. Clearly the tax payers of Fishers don't have a significant interest in this project, so PLEASE DON'T USE OUR VALUABLE MONEY. Government money is finite and needs to be utilized for the most efficient and productive purposes. This is far from that.

      5. I only tried it 2x and didn't think much of it both times. With the new apts plus a couple other of new developments on Guilford, I am surprised it didn't get more business. Plus you have a couple of subdivisions across the street from it. I hope Upland can keep it going. Good beer and food plus a neat environment and outdoor seating.