Tag Archives: Phoenix Coyotes

Coyotes Activation at Westgate 1

Coyotes Fan Deals at Westgate Start Tonight

Westgate Entertainment District and the Arizona Coyotes have teamed up for the second consecutive year to present fans with pre-game entertainment and activities on the Westgate Plaza prior to the Coyotes Opening Night game on Thursday, October 9 versus the Winnipeg Jets and the team’s second home game against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday, Oct. 11.

The Westgate Events Plaza, which is located directly outside of Gila River Arena will play host to fan activations including a live 80’s cover band, Coyotes-themed inflatables, interactive fan experiences, a ball hockey rink (Thursday), a synthetic ice rink (Saturday) and Arizona Sports 98.7, 98KUPD and 100.7 KSLX will be on hand with live radio broadcasts. In addition, the Coyotes will create a Winter Wonderland outside Gila River Arena by filling the sky with a snow flurry.

The pre-game festivities and live music will begin at 5:00 p.m. both nights and continue through 6:30 p.m.  Before each game, fans are encouraged to come early and stay late at Westgate and frequent the many restaurants, bars and retailers that will be offering specials for Coyotes fans all season long.

“We’re pleased to once again partner with the Coyotes to amp up the fan experience for all home games,” said Jeff Teetsel, development manager of Westgate Entertainment District. “Westgate provides a unique setting for hockey fans with the combination of more than 20 restaurants, bars and retailers steps from Gila River Arena in conjunction with activities, music and team-themed experiences. We value our relationship with the Coyotes and are proud to help present a vibrant fan environment that rivals anything in the country.”

“We are extremely excited about our Opening Night,” said Coyotes Co-Owner, President and CEO Anthony LeBlanc. “We encourage all of our great fans to come early to Gila River Arena and Westgate Entertainment District to enjoy the fantastic atmosphere on the plaza before we drop the puck to begin the Coyotes 2014-15 regular season.”

As part of the partnership, Coyotes season ticket holders have been mailed a Westgate VIP Card providing them discounts at a majority of Westgate tenants that can be used throughout the season.

Fans can also take advantage of discounts and specials all season long when they show their ticket stub on home game days at the following Westgate tenants:

McFadden’s
One free drink, your choice of well, wine, or domestic draft, with purchase of an entrée. Must present game day ticket, 623-872-0022

Calico Jack’s Mexican Cantina
Free appetizer with purchase of two regular priced adult entrees with a game-day ticket stub, post-game only, 623-877-5225

Which Wich
FREE house chips or a cookie with the purchase of any Wich. Offer only valid with a Coyotes ticket stub, 623-977-9424

Shane’s Rib Shack
Free BBQ Pork Nachos with the purchase of a plate and two drinks with a game-day ticket stub, 623-877-7427

Razzleberriez Frozen Yogurt
Buy one yogurt, get one 50 percent off of equal or lesser value with a game-day ticket stub, 623-877-3542

The Shout! House
Free cover for you and a guest with a game-day ticket stub for the first 50 fans. Must be 21 or older , 623-772-1500

Cold Stone Creamery
Two for $6 – Buy two “Like It” Creations for $6 when fans present their game-day ticket stub , 623-877-1580

Mama Gina’s
10 percent off your entire bill (excludes personal pizza and liquor) with a game-day ticket stub, 623-872-0300

Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville
15 percent off food and non-alcoholic beverages (excludes happy hour pricing) with a game-day ticket stub, 623-772-0011

CRAVE Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches (Opening Early 2015)
Free soft drink with purchase of any sandwich with game day ticket.

For additional details about these deals, visit http://www.westgateaz.com/coyotes.

tostitos_fiesta_bowl_-_50_yd_line_logo

Fiesta Bowl has new leadership

The Fiesta Bowl has hired former Phoenix Coyotes CEO Mike Nealy as it executive director.

He replaces Robert Shelton, who resigned in January after spending 2 1/2 years trying to rebuild the bowl game in the wake of scandal. Shelton took over after John Junker resigned for taking part in an illegal campaign contribution scheme that ended with an eight-month federal prison sentence for him.

Nealy spent eight years as the Coyotes’ president and CEO, leading the franchise during a difficult four-year stretch without an owner.

He also worked as an executive with the Minnesota Wild for four years prior to joining the Coyotes.

In March, the Fiesta Bowl announced that Andy McCain, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Hensley Beverage Company, had been elected the 2014-15 Chairman of the Board.

McCain joined the Fiesta Bowl organization as a Board member in 2007. As Chairman of the Board, McCain will oversee the Fiesta Bowl organization, which operates the Tostitos® Fiesta Bowl, the Buffalo Wild Wings BowlTM and more than 40 related statewide events.

“It is an honor to be this year’s Chairman of the Fiesta Bowl,” McCain said. “I look forward to continuing the legacy started by our founders more than 40 years ago by hosting great games and events with unmatched hospitality, promoting Arizona and giving back to the community.”

advertising

Cramer-Krasselt Dominates 2014 ADDY Awards

The local advertising industry celebrated its version of the Oscars last weekend and Cramer-Krasselt dominated the competition with 18 awards, including two gold, five silver and 11 bronze honors for a wide range of clients.

Hosted by the Metro Phoenix Chapter of the American Advertising Federation, the annual ADDY Awards honor advertising excellence in print, radio, television, digital, out-of-home and other categories.

A record 500 entries were evaluated by a distinguished panel of judges representing the nation’s top advertising and integrated marketing agencies.

“Our work is based on the idea that the brand with the most friends wins,” said Ian Barry, C-K’s senior vice president and executive creative director. “We work tirelessly to uncover insights that not only help us create memorable work for a wide range of clients, but that also drive their businesses.”

Among C-K’s award-winning work was:

Arizona Science Center
(Out-Of-Home: Bronze Winner)
C-K extended its “Never Stop Wondering” campaign inside Arizona Science Center to ask questions about, well, everything.

Phoenix Coyotes
(Newspaper: Bronze Winner)
The “Hungrier than Ever” campaign conveyed new ownership’s commitment to the team and a renewed commitment to Phoenix Coyotes’ fans.

MGM Grand
(Consumer or Trade Publication: Silver Winner)
Print ads in high-profile publications such as Entertainment Weekly, Bon Appetit and Travel + Leisure underscored MGM Grand’s position as the ultimate entertainment authority in Las Vegas, with legendary events, along with world-class nightlife, dining and shows.

Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau
(Newspaper: Bronze and Silver Winner)
“Grabbing life by the moments” was the premise of a new campaign for Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau. The idea was to highlight the amazing moments visitors can experience in Monterey, layered with the destination’s carpe diem attitude toward life.

Salt River Project (TV: Bronze and Silver Winner)
It feels good to save money and energy. This campaign brings that good feeling to life with light-hearted and exaggerated scenarios in TV, online, radio, and print. C-K also worked to secure specific media placements that align with “feel good” moments.

Valley Toyota Dealers (TV: Bronze, Silver and Gold Winner)
Eight years and still going strong, C-K’s “Pat” campaign for Valley Toyota Dealers took the quirky spokesperson’s antics to a new level, while driving robust vehicle sales.

radio

KTAR Sports 620 moves to FM dial

In a significant move to expand its audience reach and community impact, Arizona Sports 620 (KTAR AM) will today begin simulcasting on 98.7 FM, strengthening its multi-platform distribution.

“Putting Arizona Sports on FM is an opportunity too big to ignore,” said Scott Sutherland, vice president and market manager for station owner Bonneville Phoenix. “Our live, local and exclusive sports content has never been better. We have world-class local talk personalities who deliver powerful opinions and insights that engage, entertain and positively impact the communities we serve. We also have amazing team partners. And all of this attracts a passionate and loyal audience, which in turn, attracts a lot of marketing interest from small and medium business owners, major brands and C-Suite decision makers.”

Besides a stronger signal and better statewide broadcasting reach, Sutherland said more than 85 percent of radio listeners utilize the FM dial.

The move also brings to a close a decade-long run for The Peak (KPKX) music station. “We want to sincerely thank everyone at 98.7 The Peak for accomplishing great things over the past 10 years,” added Sutherland. With the move, Sutherland said 11 positions are being eliminated.

Distributed on FM and AM radio, on desktop, tablet and mobile devices via ArizonaSports.com, and through Apple and Android apps, Arizona Sports is the leading sports media brand in the Southwest.

Arizona Sports is the flagship broadcaster for the Phoenix Suns, Arizona Cardinals, Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Coyotes, Arizona State University and broadcasts Arizona Interscholastic Association prep sporting events from around the state.

coyotes

Phoenix Coyotes Owners Have Big Plans for the Team, Including a Name Change

For the first time since 2009 the Phoenix Coyotes have an owner, IceArizona. IceArizona is a group composed of several business leaders from across North America. Renaissance sports and entertainment LLC will act as managing partner of IceArizona.

“It has been exhausting yet very rewarding, we are thrilled that we have been able to finally own this franchise and we are just really excited for what the future holds for us,” said Anthony LeBlanc.

LeBlanc and the other members of IceArizona successfully purchased the Coyotes on August 5, 2013.

“It is the first hockey team I have owned and I certainly anticipate it will be the only hockey team I own,” says LeBlanc.

LeBlanc’s background in business and marketing is one of the reasons he is not just the owner of the team, but also the CEO and president.

“I think that is the reason that I am one of the members, or really the only member of ownership group that is here in an operational roll, is I do have a unique background in sales and marketing and we felt that that was one of the key areas that this franchise needed assistance with and I am thrilled to be able to be the person to provide that,” he said.

In addition to his business experience and skills, LeBLanc also brings a passion and love for hockey.

“I think that it would be rare to find a Canadian boy who wouldnΓÇÖt want to own a hockey team, so it is certainly something I have always wanted to be apart of,” LeBlanc says.”But we really realized, well a couple of years ago when we first looked at the franchise, but we really realized at the early part of this year once we partnered with George Gosbee and the rest of the ownership group that this was something that we could really make a reality.”

The new owners are are confident that Phoenix is the right place for a hockey team.

So far the 2013-14 season has gone smoothly despite the ownership transition.

“It has been really solid,” LeBlanc said. “On the ice we are thrilled with how the team is playing and on the business front we focus on three key metrics. Ticket sales are up about 20 percent year-over-year. From a revenue perspective, sponsorships are looking like they are going to be the best year in Coyotes history, and we have sold an additional 12 suites so far this year on a full-time basis and our suite rentals are up almost 100 percent year-over-year.”

Watch it here:

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Coyotes move closer toward having an owner

The prospective owners of the Phoenix Coyotes have signed their lease agreement for Jobing.com Arena.

Daryl Jones, partner with Renaissance Sports & Entertainment, tweeted on Monday that the lease agreement with the City of Glendale has been executed.

The Glendale City Council approved a 15-year, $225 million arena lease deal with RSE during a special session last week.

RSE still has to complete its purchase of the team and get approval from the NHL’s Board of Governors, but those are expected to be formalities.

The Coyotes have been run by the league the past four years after former owner Jerry Moyes took the team into bankruptcy in 2009.

Westgate Entertainment District

Generating Big Business out West

Nearly all retailers and restaurateurs will tell you that the key to having a successful business is largely based on the old adage – location, location, location.

For several national entertainment and restaurant brands with Valley-wide locations, revenue figures indicate that the West Valley now ranks number one in market share, with their top-producing stores at Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale.

The bolstering of year-over-year revenue figures for nearly all of the big-name tenants at Westgate is largely attributed to the support of iStar Financial, who took ownership of Westgate Entertainment District in September of 2011. More than $300,000 in improvements and beautification have been made to Westgate’s common areas over the past year. Additionally, a strong focus has been placed on a better targeted and promoted events schedule, the hiring of Vestar to aggressively market and manage the property and the engagement with tenants to refocus their marketing and promotional efforts.

“By far, my most profitable store in Arizona is at Westgate,” said Rip Riva, owner of Johnny Rockets and JR Burger Grill, who has four other Valley locations of the popular all-American restaurant, including Scottsdale Fashion Square, Shops at Norterra, Arrowhead and Gateway Pavilion in Avondale. “I’ve been in the restaurant business for 40 years and have owned more than 30 different franchise restaurants. There’s now a synergy at Westgate that you can’t find anywhere else. With all of the events taking place, we’re seeing a constant increase in new customers. In the past few months, there is a new feeling, a new look and a new attitude. I’ve been at Westgate since the beginning and I just extended my lease another five years.”

Similarly, AMC Theatres at Westgate, which is the largest AMC in the state featuring 20 screens and an IMAX, is the top revenue producing AMC Theatres in Arizona. Yard House, with three Arizona locations, notes Westgate as its biggest revenue generating restaurant in the state. And, Saddle Ranch Chop House, with one location in Old Town Scottsdale and the other at Westgate, cites Glendale as its top-producing restaurant.

“The West Valley is a big market for us,” said Jeff Hall, owner of Which Wich at Westgate. “Westgate is our cornerstone location and our success there has allowed us to expand to other parts of the state including Tucson and two soon-to-open locations in the East Valley. We’ve seen about a 15 percent increase to our top-line revenue over last year. Between the concerts, on-site and nearby sporting events, movie theatre and very loyal office lunch crowd, there’s a formula there that just works.”

In September, Just Sports expanded their Westgate location, adding an additional 1,000 square feet to the existing 2,000 square feet, making it the company’s flagship location. Their Glendale location is their highest producing store among 18 stores on the West Coast.

Westgate Entertainment District encompasses more than 25 restaurants, retailers and entertainment venues including Yard House, The Shout! House, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, Kabuki Japanese Restaurant, Johnny Rockets, Which Wich and AMC Theatres. More than 250 events take place a year ranging from live music every Friday and Saturday night at Fountain Park to Bike Nights, Radio Disney Wednesdays, a holiday ice rink and fan experience events.

Westgate is anchored by Jobing.com Arena, home to the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes, headlining concerts and major events, and is adjacent to the University of Phoenix Stadium, home to the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals.

For more information about Westgate Entertainment District and a retailer directory, visit www.westgatecitycenter.com.

KOOZA Photos 2007 004

Glendale CVB Rising in the West

Game on!

Cities like Glendale, Peoria, Goodyear, Surprise, and the other 14 cities that make up the West Valley are capitalizing on the rapid expansion of tourism and hospitality amenities — particularly spring training baseball facilities and other sports-related events — to grab a bigger share of the $18 billion that Arizona’s 37 million annual visitors spend.

As tourism in the West Valley continues to grow, the Glendale Convention & Visitor’s Bureau (CVB) is playing a bigger and more vital role to help drive visitors to West Valley hospitality businesses.

“The region provides the local and out-of-state traveler with an experience like no other,” says Lorraine Pino, Glendale CVB manager. “We are home to nine Cactus League spring training teams, the Arizona Cardinals and Phoenix Coyotes, Phoenix International Raceway, Wildlife World Zoo and Aquarium, great outdoor festivals, historic districts in each of our cities, performing arts centers and unique shopping venues. And, of course, you can be an astronaut for the day at our Challenger Space Center.”

Despite this diverse range of attractions, tourism is a relatively new industry in the West Valley. As a result, not every community in the area is equipped to implement independent marketing and promotion initiatives. Glendale CVB organizes and facilitates these initiatives, partnering with more than 100 restaurants, shopping malls, sports facilities, resorts and hotels, and service organizations.

“We work closely with our hotels — such as the Renaissance Glendale Hotel & Spa, Wigwam Resort, Hilton Garden Inn Avondale and many more — to provide lead generation and conference assistance,” Pino says.

Glendale CVB also serves as a liaison to large-scale entertainment such as Cirque du Soleil, which was held at University of Phoenix Stadium this summer, and mammoth events such as the Super Bowl, which will return to Glendale in 2015.

“When the Super Bowl was last held in Glendale in 2008, the Glendale CVB was not yet in existence,” Pino says. “But now that our bureau is in place for the 2015 game, the region will be in a better position to capture a greater share of visitor spending.”

Economists estimate that hosting a Super Bowl has an economic impact of $300 million-$500 million on the region.

“In addition, realizing that this mega event impacts the entire metro area and several destinations statewide, the Glendale CVB will be working with other tourism and hospitality organizations throughout the Valley to ensure that we provide the greatest fan experience possible, and to host the best Super Bowl possible,” Pino says.

By the end of 2012, Glendale will welcome yet another visitor destination when the Tanger Outlets Westgate is completed. The 328,000-square-foot retail development will feature 85 brand-name outlet stores and is expected to bring an additional 5 million-6 million annual visitors to the area.

With economic growth in the West Valley expected to continue its upward trend for years to come, Pino insists that communities must work together to realize the greatest benefit from an increasing number of visitors.

“It’s important that we all work together and pool our resources to achieve economies of scale,” Pino says. “This is the very reason the Glendale CVB came into existence: to serve as a regional organization to promote and showcase the 14 West Valley cities and to bring tourism business to the area. This regional approach is what will be needed for our hospitality businesses to continue to grow.”

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NHL cancels first 2 weeks of games

The first two weeks of the NHL regular season, a total of 82 games from Oct. 11 to Oct. 24, have been canceled, the league announced Thursday.

“The cancellation was necessary because of the absence of a collective bargaining agreement between the NHL Players’ Association and the NHL,” the league said on its website.

The NHL locked out its players Sept. 15, when the collective bargaining agreement expired. After talks between the league and the union broke off after a two-hour bargaining session Tuesday, no negotiations have been scheduled.

The central point of contention is how to split hockey-related revenue. The owners are demanding that the players’ share of revenue drop from 57 percent to about 47 percent, a pay cut of approximately 17.5 percent. The union has offered to accept diminished pay raises that would reduce players’ share of revenue to about 53 percent.

This is the third time since 1994 that the NHL has lost games to a lockout.

The list of players signing with European clubs continued to grow. Among those who signed deals Thursday were Philadelphia Flyers stars Claude Giroux and Danny Briere, who both agreed to join Eisbaren Berlin, a powerful team in the top German league. Briere has sole custody of his three children, and his decision to go overseas could be taken as a sign that the lockout might drag on for a long time.

About 100 players have signed with foreign teams since the lockout began. During the 2004-5 lockout, when the entire season was canceled, nearly 400 players joined European leagues.

 

Goldwater Institute - Phoenix Coyotes

Goldwater Institute Seeks To Stop Coyotes Vote

A conservative watchdog group, Goldwater Institute, plans to ask a judge for a temporary restraining order Friday to prevent a Glendale City Council vote on a lease agreement that would clear the way for the sale of the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes.

The Goldwater Institute said Thursday that its request will be filed at 8:30 a.m. Friday in Maricopa County Superior Court. The institute bases its request on its contention that the city violated the Arizona open meetings law by failing to make public all documents related to the lease.

The seven-member council is scheduled to convene at 10:15 a.m. Friday to vote on a lease that would pay prospective owner Craig Jamison $17 million a year for arena operation costs and other items. The NHL has owned the team for three seasons after buying it in U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

Goldwater officials said they question the timing of the council’s vote.

“The city of Glendale plans to consider what is estimated to be a $425 million arena management deal for Jobing.com Arena,” Goldwater Institute president Darcy Olsen said in a statement. “Arizona’s Open Meetings Law and multiple court orders require the city to make public all documents related to the proposed contract at least 24 hours before a council vote is taken, which it has not done.

“The 100-page deal released on Monday refers to a number of exhibits that are central to analyzing the impact of the deal on Glendale’s finances, which the city must make public,” Olsen added.

Messages left with officials with Glendale and the Coyotes for comment on the Goldwater Institute’s planned action weren’t immediately returned Thursday night.

A proposed sale of the Coyotes last year to Chicago businessman Matthew Hulsizer was derailed by the threat of a lawsuit by the Phoenix-based Goldwater Institute.

The threat held up the city’s sale of bonds necessary to fill the requirements of the lease agreement reached with Hulsizer. The watchdog group argued that Glendale’s deal with Hulsizer violated the state’s anti-subsidy law.

The NHL bought the Coyotes out of bankruptcy in September 2009 with the intention of finding a buyer to keep the team in Arizona. The franchise never has made a profit since moving from Winnipeg in 1996.

This year, the Coyotes won the final five games of the regular season to capture their first division title in 33 years as an NHL franchise. They got past the first round of the playoffs for the first time in 25 years by beating Chicago and then defeated Nashville before losing to Los Angeles in the Western Conference finals.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman announced before Game 5 of Phoenix’s second-round series with Nashville that the league had reached a preliminary agreement to sell the team to a group headed by Jamison, a former San Jose Sharks CEO. But the deal hinged on working out a lease agreement with Glendale.

For more information on the Goldwater Institute visit their website at goldwaterinstitute.org.

Commercial Real Estate Industry - AZRE Magazine September/October 2011

How Legal Issues Will Affect The Commercial Real Estate Industry Recovery, 2012

How Legal Issues Will Affect The Commercial Real Estate Industry Recovery, 2012

Arizona legislators packed the recent regular session with 357 new bills covering everything from food stamps to firearms.

But barely a handful will directly impact the state’s commercial real estate industry in 2012, and even those not significantly, says Greg Harris of Lewis and Roca LLP.

Still, that doesn’t mean the recent doings of Arizona’s state government, whether dictated by seemingly non-real estate focused laws or budget issues, won’t make a difference to the industry in the coming year, Harris and other local legal experts predict.

The few commercial real estate-related bills which did make it through the recent session were aimed at easing or clarifying municipal regulations and procedures that otherwise could hamper new development, Harris says.

SB1525, which was the latest of a series of laws aimed at limiting development impact fees, and SB1598, which attempts to provide some uniformity in permitting procedures among municipalities, are examples he cited.

Snell & Wilmer partner Ron Messerly adds a few more. SB1166 creates a tax exemption for certain commercial lease structures, and SB1474 has the effect of restructuring insurance requirements on multi-housing projects, Messerly says.

But any or all of those are unlikely to make much of an impact, the lawyers said.

Nor is anything monumental blowing in the wind for the next legislative session.

“There is nothing bright and shiny on the horizon that will have a significant impact on the commercial real estate industry,” Messerly says.

And that is good news, adds David Kreutzberg of Squire, Sanders & Dempsey.

“The legislature was so absorbed with budget problems, it took energy from other issues,” he says.

Kreutzberg, who specializes in hotel real estate, says he was especially pleased that certain  laws which were proposed didn’t pass during the previous session.

He noted a chunk of immigration-related bills that were rejected by the legislature or vetoed by the governor.

“SB1070 was a disaster for the hospitality industry,” Kreutzberg says. “I think the legislature got the message that they were doing injury to the state.”

On another positive note, the legislature’s continued efforts to reform the business property tax structure is a hopeful sign, and the abolishment of the Commerce Department and establishment of the new Arizona Commerce Authority is “promising,” he says.

NAIOP Arizona chairman Mike Haenel echoed Kreutzberg’s concern about revising the tax structure to make Arizona attractive to potential new or expanding businesses.

Haenel says job generators will fuel the future of Arizona’s commercial real estate industry, and HB2001 may have more of an impact on the industry in the coming years than any of the actual real estate-focused bills passed during the recent legislative session.

All those legal issues help establish Arizona’s attractiveness as a place for businesses that might be looking to expand or establish new offices in the state, he said.

A legislative negative, however, is state budget cuts for public schools, Kreutzberg says.

“We’re losing our competitive edge. It’s one of the things that is holding Arizona back,” he says. “The governor and the legislature need to face the fact that it’s a big issue.”

And not all legal issues impacting Arizona’s business growth, and therefore it’s commercial real estate industry, are spawned by the lawmakers.

Harris is concerned less about what the legislature did than what local advocacy groups did or may do to restrict development.

Examples include recent litigation and unfavorable rulings on Phoenix’s incentives for upscale mixed use complex City North, and Glendale’s proposals for saving the Phoenix Coyotes, the centerpiece of the city’s vast commerce cluster.

“Even if you have a project that most think is a good idea, advocacy groups challenging (incentives) may have a chilling effect on investors moving forward,” Harris says.

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For more information about the real estate industry and the firms mentioned in this story, visit the following links:

www.lrlaw.com
www.swlaw.com
www.ssd.com

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AZRE Magazine September/October 2011

 

Glendale CVB - AZ Business Magazine July/August 2011

Glendale CVB Expands Its Mission, Scope By Serving Entire West Valley

Glendale CVB – Whether travelers are visiting for leisure or business, Glendale has blossomed from being considered a one-day destination to a highly sought-after travel experience both nationally and internationally in a single decade. And to successfully market Glendale’s increasing expansion as the host city of sporting and mega-events — as well as the entire West Valley — the Glendale Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) was formed in July 2010.

The first incarnation of the CVB was formed in 2007, with partners comprised of representatives from Glendale, Westgate City Center, University of Phoenix Stadium and Jobing.com Arena. This group was called the West Valley Events Coalition and eventually grew to 300 members. Its growth led to the creation of the CVB within three years.

“As a brand new CVB, one of our primary focuses is to increase awareness and exposure of our region through various activities that showcase the West Valley,” says Lorraine Pino, manager of the CVB.

The Glendale CVB promotes Glendale are through a regional visitors guide and sponsoring events to media buyers in national and international markets.

With venues such as the Phoenix International Raceway in Peoria, Jobing.com Arena in Glendale and spring training sites across the region, the Glendale CVB has successfully collaborated with businesses and West Valley cities to make these events possible and boost tourism.

According to Pino, the spring training facilities generate $328 million annually, and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl in Glendale generates $200 million per year. In addition, there is revenue from concerts, Arizona Cardinals and Phoenix Coyotes games and NASCAR events. As a result, hotel room count in Glendale alone has more than tripled from 400 rooms in 2007 to nearly 1,500.

“The West Valley is the real hub of spring training in Arizona, showcasing nine of 15 teams in the Cactus League,” says Frank Ashmore, director of sales and marketing for The Wigwam in Litchfield Park.

Because the CVB has been able to bring sporting events to the area, in turn attracting visitors, businesses in the region are benefiting.

The events have made a huge impact on all neighboringbars and restaurants, says Michelle Sniegowski, sales and marketing manager for The Shout! House in Glendale.

“The events bring in thousands of people; they fill our venue and in turn boost our economy,” she says.

One attraction vitally important to the Glendale area, according to Pino, is Westgate City Center. It generates tax revenue by drawing visitors from around the world.

Paul Corliss, director of communications for the Phoenix International Raceway, says “the West Valley certainly deserves attention.”

“It’s the quality of dining, shopping, hotel rooms, spas, convention space and more that keep (tourists) coming back,” says Nicole Traynor, director of public relations for Westgate City Center.

As West Valley tourism increases, The Wigwam is receiving a facelift from its new owner, the development company JDM Partners. Headed by former Phoenix Suns owner Jerry Colangelo and his partners Mel Shultz and David Eaton, JDM Partners is investing in the multimillion-dollar restoration, with Phase I recently completed.

It seems to be making a difference. “Group markets are up nearly 50 percent over the last year,” Ashmore says.

Arizona Business Magazine July/August 2011