MB city budget may include help to bolster sports tourism events

Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium was out of operation last season after undergoing renovations. City leaders are hoping it will attract good numbers for track and field sports tourism. (File photo/WPDE)

When you think of what drives Myrtle Beach's economy, what comes to mind?

If you ask some Myrtle Beach city leaders, it's sports tourism and they're thinking about increasing the commitment to bring in more events.

Last year, Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium was closed for renovation. That hurt the industry for the season because the city didn't make a dime off track and field events.

Just one year ago, track and field events brought in more than $1.6 million, and the year before that, more than $1.5 million.

In an effort to grow the industry, council is considering hiring a sports tourism and sales marketing manager.

City Manager John Pederson said Monday, there isn't much room for budget expansion outside public safety, but it's important to have city-run events.

"We feel like, by adding a position, we'll be able to do some more programs and more events that we own ourselves and that's what that additional position will be responsible for," he said.

Pederson said often times, the city partners with outside contractors for sport events and tournaments.

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