BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Toronto Blue Jays heading to Buffalo to play the 2020 season is thought to be a “good shot in the arm” for the City of Good Neighbors. Visit Buffalo Niagara CEO and President Patrick Kaler said the region will see both immediate and long-term economic impacts.
“There are always cutaways to the city…and so to have that opportunity will be really great with the markets that the games will be shown in,” Kaler said.
Tourism and hospitality are expected to be the two industries impacted most by the announcement.
Broadcasts of the game Kaler hopes will attract viewers from target markets like New York City, while also keeping the city on the “top of mind” for Canadians once the border reopens. Visit Buffalo Niagara reports 40-47% of tourism for the region comes from Southern Ontario and Toronto.
Kaler added it may be too early to estimate just how many jobs could be created and brought back. The pandemic wiped out more than half of all hospitality jobs in the region. However, it is hoped some of those jobs come back as players from both the Blue Jays and visiting team will be staying in local hotels.
“This will be really good for those properties who will be able to bring back some of their employees from the front desk workers to maintenance workers, the housekeeping staff, probably some restaurant workers as well,” Kaler said.