Study: Touchdown Atlantic provided economic boost to Nova Scotia cities

TORONTO — The CFL's '22 Touchdown Atlantic generated more than $12.7 million in economic benefit to regions of Nova Scotia according to a study commissioned by the league.

Touchdown Atlantic was held in Wolfville, N.S., in July and culminated with the Toronto Argonauts downing the Saskatchewan Roughriders 30-24 before 10,886 spectators at an expanded Raymond Field on the campus of Acadia University.

On Thursday, a study by Sport Tourism Canada (STC) stated there was over $12.7 million in economic activity in Nova Scotia as a result of Touchdown Atlanta. It said the combined spending of out-of-town participants, staff, spectators, media, and other visitors was more than $9.1 million.

And of the $12.7 million, over $11.8 million was in the Halifax area alone. The expenditures supported 95 jobs and $3.8 million in wages and salaries across the province, of which 90 jobs and $3.4 million were supported locally.

The study was commissioned by the CFL. STC’s economic impact team managed the survey and data collection process. 

The report also stated Touchdown Atlantic attracted 7,879 out-of-town visitors and generated $8 million in visitor spending, which translates into a $6.2 million boost to the provincial GDP.

“It was incredible to see fans across the country and local East Coast communities embrace this year’s Touchdown Atlantic,” CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie said in a statement. “Despite some lingering challenges from COVID-19, we are proud to have helped bring $12.7 million to the region and local businesses.

“In hearing the cheers of a sold-out stadium, meeting so many excited fans and families throughout our celebrations, and seeing Toronto and Saskatchewan players’ impacts in the community, we firmly believe that the East Coast is ready to be home to a 10th CFL franchise.”

The report stated Touchdown Atlantic played a big role in people deciding to visit Eastern Canada as part of their vacationing, adding 95 per cent indicated they'd likely attend a similar event again and that a return visit to Halifax and Wolfville would be likely. 

The study included a survey of 644 attendees, who answered questions about their spending.

"Touchdown Atlantic delivered high-calibre football and incredible entertainment to fans and introduced them to Acadia University, Wolfville and nearby communities," said Dr. Peter Ricketts, Acadia's president and vice-chancellor. "It was an exciting win for the university and the entire region."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 27, 2022.

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