Volleyball tourney at Wisconsin Center set to bump area business

This weekend, the Wisconsin Center will host their first non-political event in nearly a year — the Wisconsin Juniors Volleyball Club.

This is one of several volleyball tournaments in the month of March that could help bring more than $6 million into the local economy.

Hotels and restaurants are expected to get a much-needed boost in business over the next couple of weekends. 

This event normally draws thousands of people to the Wisconsin Center, however, like everything in the pandemic, things will look differently. 

Vice President of Marketing and Communications Sarah Maio says the tournaments are expected to pump millions into the local economy through hotel stays and visits to local shops, museums and restaurants.

Sarah Maio

"We will be hosting families from the upper midwest over the next four weekends we estimate the economic impact to the region to be $6.5 million," Maio said.

There will be noticeable changes for teams.

"The building has changed, we have a high-frequency air exchange, we have this fantastic 30-foot ceiling, we are standing in a 188,000 square-foot space, but we are only setting up 24 courts. A fraction of what can normally be set up," she said.

There are also strict rules for players and coaches.

Masks must be worn at all times.

"Each volleyball player is allowed only one spectator, so at no time will there be more than 1,250 people in the expo hall in the Wisconsin Center," Maio said.

There will also be frequent cleaning between tournaments and overnight.

"They have three hours to play and then they must exit the building within 15 minutes after their tournament ends," she said.

Maio says a lot of precautions are in full swing to assure a safe event for the Wisconsin Center and the city.

Anyone not complying with the health guidelines will first be given a warning, and if the behavior is not corrected, they will be asked to leave.

DHS: 1M Wisconsinites have gotten at least 1 dose of COVID-19 vaccine

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announced on Friday, March 5 that one million people in Wisconsin have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine