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Green Bay Is The Big Winner After The Big Game

UW-Madison, LSU Headed North To Play At Lambeau Field

Morry Gash/AP Photo

The face-off between the University of Wisconsin-Madison Badger football team and Louisiana State University Tigers at Lambeau Field on Saturday was an economic shot in the arm for Green Bay, city officials say.

On a scale of one to 10, the success of the event was “probably a 15,” said Brandon Toll, president and CEO of the Green Bay Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Out-of-town fans flocked to see the Badgers defeat LSU 16-14 on the Green Bay Packers’ home field, a change from the Badgers’ usual spot at Camp Randall.

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Fans not only crowded the Green Bay stadium, but area hotels and restaurants as well.

Toll said a typical home Packers game generates between $13.5 million – $14 million, however, Saturday’s college game brought in an even higher revenue.

“We heard many of our restaurants were even hiring relatives and neighbors trying to fill the need for staffing because they were expecting such huge crowds, and we did get those,” he said. “Even our airport had seven charter jets come in from the Baton Rouge area.”

Toll said his organization isn’t doing an economic impact analysis, but he hopes the university will consider bringing more Badger games to Packers territory.

While it was an economic loss for some Madison venues, the capital city still hosted a number of fans who didn’t get tickets for the game, said Deb Archer, president and CEO of the Greater Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau.

“Our community would have loved to have the game here, there’s no two ways about that, because it’s just not only the economic impact, but just the vibrancy and the energy,” she said. “It’s part of the fabric of this community in the fall to have football games.”

Archer said it was still a busy weekend in Madison with students moving into the dorms and the Taste of Madison food festival.