All-Star Game a home run for Southern California economy

Crews prepare field at Angels Stadium for All-Star Game.
Crews prepare field at Angels Stadium for All-Star Game.
Brian Watt/KPCC

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Major League Baseball's All Star Game has turned into an All-Star Week and it's been going on in Anaheim since Friday. Baseball's bosses and Anaheim city officials estimate Tuesday night's game and other All-Star events could generate $85 million in spending in Southern California.

Two Los Angeles of Anaheim players made the American League All-Star roster. Neither made the starting line-up. But as host of the 2010 All-Star game and five days of events that go with it, the Angels still score big.

"It’s not just a thank-you to their current fan base, but it also gives the team a chance to expose casual fans and periodic fans to just how convenient and accessible to just how fun that ballpark is," says David Carter, Executive Director of the USC Marshall Sports Business Institute.

The city of Anaheim is already known for its fun, especially this time of year. Disneyland and other attractions draw big crowds, so Carter says it’s hard to count the extra money an event like the All-Star Game will bring in.

"I think it's indisputable, though, that you have the media; you have corporate sponsors; you have avid baseball fans from all over the country coming, " says Carter. "They're bringing their families because this is a tourist destination. Not just Disneyland. But they can head up to Santa Monica, Universal City, even head down south to the San Diego Zoo. So from a regional standpoint, I think it's going to be very powerful."

City officials say at least 100,000 more visitors will generate another $85 million in spending across the Southland. Anaheim Police Chief John Welter says the city won’t blow its piece of the tax windfall on paying officers to work longer hours.

"We don’t anticipate a lot of overtime because we are very conscious about the budget, and we’re very proud of the fact that we handle hundreds of thousand of people in this city," Welter says.

Welter says to avoid overtime costs, his department is adjusting shift schedules and moving detectives into assignment uniformed officers would take on normal days.