Saskatoon will be buzzing day and night as Garth Brooks fever takes hold of the city.
Tens of thousands of fans are expected to see the country musician play six shows in four days at SaskTel Centre, starting Thursday.
“It’s great for the city, having that volume come in, but you know – it’s 91,000 people coming in and the hotels commented they had never seen anything like it,” said Todd Brandt, president and CEO of Tourism Saskatoon.
“When the tickets went on sale, their phones started ringing off the hook and it’s a complete sell-out in the city for Friday and Saturday night,” he said.
While the sell-out includes bed and breakfasts, motels and other such accommodations, there is still some availability for Thursday and Sunday nights in the city.
Brandt said while it’s regrettable some are scrambling for space, it’s becoming more rare for Saskatoon hotels to sell-out with all the new properties added in the city.
With that, many concert goers have taken to staying in outlying areas such as Martensville and Warman. Even Garth Brooks’ entourage has currently taken up at the Ramada Inn in Prince Albert.
Radio DJ Britney Kuchirka with Today’s Country 900 CKBI in Prince Albert caught up some of the team Wednesday afternoon.
“Pretty cool; they were actually really nice guys and I was just letting them know what they could do around Prince Albert,” she said.
“It was a long drive for them, but they were pretty pumped to be here.”
She said around 15 crew members are now stationed in the northern Sask. city until Sunday.
The team brought up a convoy of semis after dropping off equipment for the Garth Brooks shows at SaskTel Centre on Wednesday.
The crew said they’re looking forward to fishing and checking out lakes up north, just one of the many ways Garth Brooks’ performances are set to make a big impact on Saskatchewan.
Tourism Saskatoon said as of now, the projection for direct spending from Brooks’ fans coming into the area is sitting at $11.8 million.
“It’s new money coming into our economy and that gets spread around food and beverage establishments, retail and hotels as well.”
The data comes from Statistics Canada detailing the average daily spending from leisure travellers in Saskatoon; it’s dependent on whether the person is coming from outside the city or outside the province.
As for the total economic impact, which includes other spending factors along with how much city residents will dole out this weekend, the amount is expected to be much higher.