ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Teams of figure skaters from across the country are in Albany for the weekend for a huge tournament.
The Eastern Sectional Synchronized Skating Competition is gliding into town for the weekend and bringing skaters from up and down the East Coast.
“We knew this event was going to be a big draw as far as economic impact goes,” Jill Delaney with Discover Albany said.
One hundred fifty teams, 2,400 athletes, coaches and family, and four days of competition with one goal — a trip to the national championships.
And those numbers are nothing compared to what the competition is bringing off the ice.
“Once all is said and done, we’re expecting $4.1 million in economic impact from this one event,” Delaney said.
Over $4 million is huge at a time of year when things are pretty chill in the city, and the skaters are being welcomed with plenty of enthusiasm.
“You’re gonna see some awesome skating, and the energy here when I walked into the building earlier, I thought I was walking into the Super Bowl,” Albany Co. Exec. Dan McCoy said.
The event is expected to bring in almost double what the NCAA March Madness tournament is expected to generate. It’s a slam dunk for Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, who hopes the weekend’s events will bring even more fans to the sport.
“Come and learn about this incredible sport, watch amazing skating, and we really want to make sure we attract this type of competition year after year, so I am hoping people come out and check it out,” she said.
And it’s more than the economic impact; the sport of synchronized skating has seen tremendous growth.
The winner’s of the event move on to the national championships in Providence in February and the World Skating Synchronized Skating Championships in Lake Placid in April.