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BMX puts Manteca on track for visitor cash

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POSTED September 3, 2009 2:51 a.m.
To some, it is just a mound of dirt devoid of grass.

Councilman Vince Hernandez and others, though, see more than just dirt in the new BMX track that is nearing completion in Spreckels Recreation Park at Spreckels Avenue and Moffat Boulevard where kids and adults can have fun competing.

Hernandez at Tuesday night’s Manteca City Council meeting noted the $7,500 the city is giving to the non-profit Anderson 209 BMX organization to offset insurance to cover the general public plus maintain the track for the next year is a drop in the bucket compared to what the city and community will get in return.

First, there is the obvious. It will provide Manteca with another community recreation amenity. The city also is getting maintenance and upkeep done while having the track insured for $22,500 less overall than what it would have cost the city to do it on their own. Insurance companies require whoever is doing the upkeep to provide the additional insurance coverage needed when the general public is using the facility when events covered by the American Bicycle Association insurance aren’t taking place.

The biggest impact, however, might just be in the cash registers of Manteca businesses.

Hernandez shared information he requested from the Manteca Convention & Visitors Bureau on the potential economic impact of the course on the Manteca economy. The CVB used data collected from the Roseville BMX and Portland, applied California tourism economic multipliers, and then reduced that amount somewhat to be conservative and came up with the following possible impacts:

•A national event at the BMX course with 1,200 riders over three days plus parents, siblings, and friends with an average of two people per rider would translate into 10,800 attendees. That would pump about $660,000 into the Manteca economy through hotel rooms, restaurants, gas sales, diversions such as the Manteca Bowl, and other shopping.

•A state finals tournament with 450 riders per day over three days plus parents, siblings, and friends with an average of two per rider would translate into 4,050 attendees. It would have a potential to bring $274,500 into the Manteca economy.

•A regional race with 200 riders per day over two days plus parents, siblings, and friends with an average of two per rider would translate into 600 attendees. That would pump $92,000 into Manteca businesses.

Hernandez stressed it would take perhaps a year and a half to get to the point Manteca can get onto race schedules.

John Anderson – the driving force behind Anderson 209 BMX – indicated the course in Manteca is cutting edge. It also has a major advantage over many other courses such as the one in Roseville as it is designed as part of a park complete with grass with paved parking. And while Roseville’s is close to the center of its community, most are not. That is another advantage for Manteca which also can use its location being equal distance to Sacramento, San Jose, and San Francisco to its advantage.

CVB Executive Director Linda Abeldt noted that the BMX track has the potential of being a major draw just like the Big League Dreams sports complex is today.

The CVB works at bringing tournaments to the Big League Dreams sports complex. Teams then book in local hotels by more often than not going through the BLD website.

The CVB intends to do the same thing with the BMX course.

Anderson is part of the CVB’s sports commission as are BLD representatives.
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