CSU summer camps boost Fort Collins economy
June 6, 2008
By Danielle Marshall
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Helping to bring an estimated 4,600 to the city every summer, camps sponsored by the Colorado State athletic department help boost the economy of Fort Collins and give visitors a taste of campus and surrounding areas. Camps also provide a new experience to those who may not travel here otherwise.
Guests from anywhere and everywhere
Campers and parents come from just about everywhere in Colorado as well as many other states all over the country. Wyoming and Nebraska bring in the most travelers, but there are also participants from other states, including Ohio, Minnesota and Oregon.
Through the months of June, July and into the beginning of August, Colorado State holds 22 athletic camps. Most are daily camps, but there are some that are overnight for teams. Teams are allowed to stay in the dorms on campus while parents who travel with the team find accommodations in nearby hotels.
Short-term and long-term benefits
The Convention & Visitors Bureau in Fort Collins estimates that camps bring $500,000 into the city each summer. For information on what to do while in the city, the CVB invites visitors to its Web site: http://www.ftcollins.com/.
Doug Johnson is the director of UniverCity Connections. Its purpose is to bring the exceptional community assets of CSU and downtown Fort Collins together in harmony with the area's natural environment.
"This is a true UniverCity Connection," he said. "Summer camps allow CSU and the city an opportunity to showcase the wide variety of activities, accommodations and dining experiences available to camp participants and their families. The hope is they have a positive experience that results in return visits, word-of-mouth referrals and recruitment of future students to CSU. The net long-term positive economic benefit of the summer camps to our community is enormous."
Swimming is the most popular of the camps and fills up the earliest. This year the camp was full by mid-April and there are more than 80 swimmers attending, which will bring an estimated 120 people to Fort Collins.
The Housing & Dining Services department on campus caters food to many events on campus during the summer, including the athletic camps. June is its busiest month, with conferences spread out in July and the first part of August. While the conference season brings unique and challenging moments, they look forward to the hustle and bustle, as well as the opportunity to extend a friendly welcome to guests. Not only do dollars benefit Housing & Dining Services, but the university as a whole, as well as the city of Fort Collins. For more information, visit http://www.housing.colostate.edu/index.asp.
A long-lasting impression
Gary Ozzello, senior associate athletic director for external operations, was involved in two summer camps at CSU when he was younger. He ultimately decided to attend college here after attending those camps.
"Summer camps offer our entire campus an opportunity to showcase the many assets we have that they may have never seen or heard of before," he said. "Most of the individuals who come to a camp won't end up playing intercollegiate athletics at CSU. But many will return as students because of the experience they have on our campus while still in high school."
Space is still available
Space is available for most of the CSU camps. For more information, visit the CSU camps and clinics page.