Pro Bowl Will Help Local Economy - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Pro Bowl Will Help Local Economy

Rex Johnson Rex Johnson

By Kristine Uyeno

HONOLULU (KHNL) - It brings the country's best football players to Hawaii.

And it also attracts thousands of visitors to the state.

The Pro Bowl is just around the corner and local tourism officials can't wait.

"How exciting is it to have the best football players converge in Hawaii," said Patrick Leonard, spokesperson at Aloha Stadium.

Bringing the best here also attracts more than 20,000 visitors to the islands.

"$33.25 million worth of spending and about $3.25 million of tax revenues," said Rex Johnson with the Hawaii Tourism Authority.

That's a big plus for the local tourism industry, which is off to a slow start this year. Tourism officials hope Hawaii's largest annual sporting event helps the numbers.

The Pro Bowl is in its 28th year and each time, it's been sold out. This year is no different. On Saturday, more than 50,000 people will pack into Aloha Stadium.

Millions more will watch the game on television. This is the first time the game will be played on a Saturday rather than a Sunday. Tourism experts hope the change is a good one.

"Yes the t.v. ratings is something we pay attention to and of course we want the highest ratings possible. Because we want to advertise and talk about Hawaii," said Johnson.

"What we want to encourage everybody, just like UH games is lots of public transportation. In fact theBus has charter buses from 17 neighborhoods," said Leonard.

Organizers expect this will be a big day for fans and the economy.

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