By: Kyle Rowland | Eleven Warriors
There was a time in the not-too-distant past when Columbus, Ohio, was nothing more than an oversized cow town with little hint of evolving into a cosmopolitan American city. Well, that’s exactly what’s happened.
Ohio’s state capital is the 15th-largest city in the country, home to Fortune 500 companies, renowned hospitals, a world-class university, diverse population and burgeoning neighborhoods.
“Today we are surrounded by success,” Mayor Michael Coleman said during his 2014 State of the City address. “The Short North Arts District, the Arena District, the Hilton convention hotel, the North Market and a thriving downtown neighborhood with world-class parks, signature bridges, great restaurants, fun nightspots, convenient retail and thousands of new residents – Columbus has changed dramatically. We have transformed from a great American city to one of America’s greatest cities.”
So what does this mean for sports? A lot. In recent years, the Greater Columbus Sports Commission has increased its push in bringing major sporting events to the city, and its success rate is high.
“We definitely have seen a change in perception of Columbus,” Bruce Wimbish, the sports commission’s director of marketing and communications, told Eleven Warriors. “When we throw our hat in the ring, it gets people’s attention more. Pretty much anything we go after, we go in optimistic and confident that we will get it, if not the year we bid for then in future years.
“We close at about a seven out of 10 rate. It’s so important to get folks here to see the package we have, because it’s a winning package. We like to tell our story and flex our muscles.”
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