COLUMBIA - The first SEC game officially began Saturday. The game brought in more than 70,000 fans at Faurot Field Saturday night. The Columbia Chamber of Commerce released a study Thursday. It said MU's athletic events will have a $185 million economic impact for the 2012-2013 fiscal year. That is compared to $147 million for 2011 fiscal year.
Local businesses, including Shakespeare's Pizza, reaped the benefits of the crowds.
"I would say, a pretty good guess, would be north of a thousand pizza's in the downtown store alone," said Shakespeare's manager, Kurt Mirtsching.
A Kaldi's Coffee House employee said they saw an increase in sales as well.
They said the secret to preparine for a busy weekend is to stay stocked and well staffed.
Mirtsching said they scan certain areas to determine the outcome.
"The hotel parking lots are a good indication of how busy you are going to be, how far cars are parked up Providence from the stadium, and all the indications we had was that it was going to be a very strong weekend," said Mirtsching.
Mirtsching says he is preparing for next weekend's game, when the Tiger's face off against the Arizona State Sundevils.
"Next weekend promises to be a strong weekend too. We are going to lick our wounds and polish our armour, cut more pepperonis, stock pile more flour and toilet paper and hopefully we'll live through it, said Mirtsching.