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Bowlers Bringing Tournament and Money to Springfield

Springfield is preparing to host for the first time in 10 years, the Ohio Women's Bowling Association's state tournament and convention. It is estimated that the 13 week event will generate nearly one million dollars to the city's economy.

Springfield has hosted the Ohio Women's Bowling tournament every 10 years since 1952. Vickie Sibole is the president of the Springfield District Bowling Association.

She says more than 5,000 bowlers from across the state and their families will be in Springfield for the association's convention in late February, and tournament that runs from early March through May.

Sibole says that three years before a district wants to host the tournament, you have to go before the membership committee and place a bid. She says Springfield has always been a popular spot for the tournament. 

"Women just enjoy coming to Springfield. On the in between years, I've had different women at different conventions ask me when are we going to bid again and when are we going to host it again," Sibole said. "It is such a big undertaking and we are one of the smaller local associations in the state, so we have pretty much stayed with trying to host it every 10 years."

Chris Schutte is the director of Clark County's Visitors and Convention Bureau. He says the bureau has been working with local hotels and restaurants in preparation for the tournament. Schutte says the tournament is like hosting a Super Bowl for Clark County.

"Well, for the local economy what we're looking at is probably a shot in the arm of roughly $800,000 in total economic impact," he said. "Things like bowling tournaments are not usually regarded as being sexy quote unquote, but they are really the bedrock of what are tourism is here."

Schutte says the Convention Bureau has been busy working with the city to make sure bowlers and their families enjoy their stay in Springfield.

The bowlers will be competing at two locations in Springfield. Victory Lanes and Northridge Lanes will be the host sites for the tournament. Schutte says admission is free to watch all of the tournament action.