State softball tournament brings economic boost to Denison

By: Steven Powell Email
By: Steven Powell Email

DENISON, TX -- The swing of a bat can drive home a run. But it's where the players and fans drive after the game that has city officials excited.

"I just had lunch at a place here in town and they were packed," said Chamber of Commerce President Anna McKinney.

Fourteen teams from across the state - including four local teams - are sliding into Denison this week for the Texas Teen Age Softball championship tournament.

"It's really fun to drive by all the lodging properties right now and see the cars everywhere," McKinney said.

She said scoring the bid to host the tournament - especially the 7 and 8 year old age group - is a homerun for the economy.

"The parents and the grandparents come along with them, so it's even better for our area when we can get the youngsters here," she said.

Athletic Supervisor Andrew Means said the city's facilities were a major factor in winning the bid.

"The teams have been really great, we're getting a lot of great feedback. They're really having a good time in Denison," he said.

And parents say it's been a fun tournament.

"It's like vacation," Lexington parent Jose Navarro said. "No matter what happens, we already won because we're having fun."

And officials are doing everything they can to ensure a perfect game as a host city - including a big outing Monday night.

"We fed them pizza, gave them soft drinks, and they were treated to a movie at the Rialto, and they just had a blast," McKinney said. "And it was great exposure to our downtown area also."

Officials plan to request hosting the tournament again next year with a different age group. They say they hope good reviews will spread through the league and help them win the bid again.

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