Calgary Stampede a ‘game changer’ for local businesses

Local businesses give a big ‘Yahoo’ to Calgary Stampede 2018 and the economic benefits it brings
WATCH: Global's Tomasia DaSilva checks in on the Stampede spirit as local businesses see increased activity – beyond the grounds.

Calgary’s annual 10-day event is expected to bring numerous economic benefits beyond the grounds this year.

From hotels to restaurants to other venues, local businesses are welcoming tourists from near and far to Calgary, bringing millions of dollars with them.

“Stampede is a game changer for a lot of our partners,” said Cindy Ady, CEO of Tourism Calgary, “They make the bulk of the money they make in a given year during the Stampede.”

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Times have been lean for some of those partners; the economic slowdown meant a slowdown for many businesses.

Now the optimism is back, and so are the profits.

“We’ve had 11 months of steady growth in hotel occupancy in the city, so we’re seeing the turnaround and the coming out of what was a pretty significant hole,” Ady said.

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READ MORE: International tourism in Alberta expected to do well in 2018: report

The owner of Urban Pedal Tours has seen that first-hand.

The Alberta-based business takes Calgarians and visitors on bike tours of local craft breweries.

The 2018 Stampede will be its launch in Calgary.

“We’re pretty busy. We’re booked up pretty much solid,” owner Matt Gosse said.

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The best part, he says, is getting his company’s name out there – during the event and hopefully beyond.

“The exposure to be out on the streets at that time — it’s really going to be great for us,” Gosse said.

WATCH: What’s new at the 2018 Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede estimates it contributes approximately $400 million in tourism dollars to the local economy over the event.