Annual softball tournament brings economic boost to Genesee County

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GRAND BLANC TWP (WJRT) - (07/07/2019) - 90 teams and nearly 2000 people made their way to the Firestix College Exposure tournament this week.

Kevin Babcock, director of the tournament says teams travel from Michigan, Canada, Indiana and Ohio.

And with the visitors comes a rise in local business.

"The businesses in the area definitely uptick on this weekend, especially on a weekend where a lot of people go up north," said Babcock. "All the hotels are usually full throughout the Grand Blanc and the Flint area which is huge too. Like I said we do have a lot of out of state teams coming in and they usually come in Thursday night, Friday and Saturday usually depending on how far they get in the tournament."

It's the 9th year the softball tournament has taken place and it's a weekend many businesses like Brick Street of Grand Blanc look forward to.

"We had a lot of traffic here,” said Michael Jablonski, owner of Brick Street bar and Grill. “It's kind of fun to service 20-25 people at one time. It's fast and furious I'll tell you, but a lot of fun."

Jablonski said their location is key during these tournaments.

"We're fortunate with Bicentennial Park right down the road there's a lot of tournaments that those folks bring to this area and this particular tournament they are from all over Michigan," said Jablonski.

Bicentennial Park has had some renovations done to keep the tournament here in Genesee County. And there is even more work schedules to take place this fall.

"I think this particular tournament brings people from all over and I think it's a step in the right direction and they're coming back,” said Jablonski. “So that's the most important thing; they are coming back."

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