National girls volleyball championships bringing big bucks to Minneapolis

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It's not as famous as Major League Baseball's All-Star Game, but another sports event underway in Minneapolis this week may have nearly as much impact on the local economy.

USA Volleyball is holding the Girls Junior National Championships at the convention center through July 3. As the Business Journal reports, city tourism officials estimate the event brings $60 million worth of spending to the Twin Cities.

An announcement from the group Meet Minneapolis says 12,000 athletes aged 11 to 18 are taking part in the event, which will crown champions in 19 different divisions. In addition 30,000 spectators, including hundreds of recruiters from college volleyball programs, are on hand.

Meet Minneapolis says the event has generated bookings at more than 100 Twin Cities hotels, totaling 48,000 room nights.

USA Volleyball, which helps groom players for the Olympic team, is live streaming matches on four of the courts at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Business owners that might profit from an influx of teenage girls and their families and coaches seem to be aware of the event.

Meet Minneapolis says the event is using five exhibit halls and the ballroom of the convention center, with 70 volleyball courts in all. Find the schedule of matches here.

According to Meet Minneapolis' estimates, the $60 million impact of the volleyball tournament is about 80 percent of the $75 million the July 15 All-Star Game is likely to bring to the region.

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