Show-Me State Games' Economic Impact
For the first time, the opening ceremony took place in Mizzou Arena. Athletes passed the torch just like in the Olympic Games. And, even before the official start, some games, including soccer and tennis already had begun.
Carmen Boessen and Lindsey Cunningham were two of the young athletes shooting hoops in the Hearnes Center Fieldhouse.
"It's a really fun experience to play, especially if you're from Columbia. It's fun to play against teams around your area. And, even if you don't win, it's just the experience so you can win more games later."
Organizers try to add sports each year to draw more people.
"This year we have dodgeball, lacrosse, fly-rod casting," explained Seth Myers, information specialist. "We also have kids' fishing, and we also added youth tackle football, which actually took place two weekends ago."
The Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau expected 40,000 people to come to town during the next 3 weekends, bringing in $8-$10 million to the local economy.