Despite COVID, Steen Sports Park says 2020 was a success !

Klamath Falls, OR  – Executive Director Scott White reported Wednesday that despite the cancellations forced by COVID-19, Steen Sports Park still brought a $3.47 million indirect economic impact for the local economy.

White noted that 193 teams participated in youth baseball and softball tournaments at the park, with 185 of those teams coming from out of the region.

“Most of the teams were out of the Central Valley and Bay Areas of California,” said White. “However, we saw teams from all over Oregon, Washington and Nevada also.”

While in town, teams spent approximately $2 million on hotels, food and fuel. White noted that park staff and volunteers were routinely asked what visitors could do while not at the park. “I pointed them to Crater Lake, the Lava Beds, the bowling alley, and the putt putt course at Running Y,” said White.

“We have no way of calculating those recreational metrics outside of the park at this time, but I am confident the economic impact is even greater than we can report due to those other activities.”

“Like all other business, we were worried when COVID threw a grenade on our 2020 plans and we weren’t sure how we were going to get through our primary revenue season,” said park president Mike Reeder.

The park made significant changes to make sure tournaments were safe for participants and fans.

“We hung countless social distancing signs, we required masks indoors and only allowed two people in the restrooms at all times. We were disinfecting regularly and only sold prepackaged goods for concessions,” said Reeder. “For the most part, I think our visitors understood and complied with the guidelines pretty well. I am happy that I have not heard of one reported case resulting from our tournaments.”

In additions, the park was awarded a $25,000 Klamath County Tourism Grant aimed at improving infrastructure.

“We have learned that there is an immediate need to revamp our web presence so a portion of this award will be going to upgrade and maintain our website,” noted Reeder. The funds will also be used for maintenance upgrades.

In the coming weeks, the park will announce its 2021 tournament schedule.

“We’ve already locked in seven fastpitch softball tournaments and we are working to match that with both baseball and adult softball,” said White. “We are very excited for what 2021 will bring for our local teams, our community, and the great partnerships we’ve built with teams across the west.”

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