Let the Games Begin: Economic Opportunity is Abundant During TAAF Games of Texas

taaf Games Medal Cover Image
Summer may be nearing its end over for many of us, but that doesn’t mean McAllen is quite ready to call it quits. Starting July 27th, our great city will once again host the Games of Texas.

These state championships, held annually by the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation, have a long and storied history. Local efforts to write another page in that story will go a long way toward continued economic growth and unity for both McAllen and the rest of the Rio Grande Valley.

The approach that originally brought the Games of Texas to McAllen was unique because of our city’s unified front in bidding to host the games. While other cities have traditionally sent only their Convention and Visitors Bureau as representatives, McAllen sent a team that not only included representatives from our CVB but from our school district and city hall as well.

That cohesive unit allowed McAllen to beat out the larger cities of Houston and Waco.

We certainly took that opportunity to stage a truly transcendent event last year. And the best is yet to come.

A Summer Like No Other

Last year was not only the farthest south in the state the event had ever been held, but it was also the first time that athletes from Mexico had been invited to and participated in the Games.

McAllen Parks and Recreation director Mike Hernandez expects this year to surpass last year’s in many ways.

While there was some hesitancy last year, athletes, their family, and their friends found their fears were unfounded. They enjoyed top notch competition and world-class hospitality during their stay in McAllen.

Over 7,000 athletes and 21,000 spectators from almost 70 cities traveled to our hometown and region last year to compete and cheer. The influx of visitors brought in nearly $10 million dollars to McAllen and surrounding cities.

The number of athletes and tourists taking part in this year’s event is expected to increase, bringing a higher projected economic impact but also requiring a stronger connected effort between those of us in the different cities where events will be held.

The largest event, expected to exceed 4,000 athletes, will be Track & Field hosted at McAllen Veterans Memorial Stadium. Additional host sites for other events include community schools, Boys & Girls Clubs, as well as city buildings and parks all throughout the Greater Rio Grande Valley.

We are also expecting to see a larger range in the ages of participants with athletes aged 5 to 50 plus. Even though there are likely to be returning competitors and fans, many still aren’t aware of the great places they can visit while here.

Making The Most Of Opportunity

This next week we will have the opportunity to entertain visitors at our businesses in McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, Harlingen, and Brownsville. This is our chance to introduce our community to thousands of people. There are endless chances for us to highlight to just what McAllen and the Rio Grande Valley has to offer.

Let’s make the most of this opportunity with warmth, positivity, and the excellent customer service that the Valley is known for. Everyone making the journey here should see just how much there is for people of all ages to enjoy. It’s time to show off our world class retail, restaurants, and hospitality!

Partners and collaborators of the McAllen Chamber of Commerce, the City of McAllen, and McAllen Economic Development Corporation, we ask that you please help us to continue telling the captivating story of McAllen. Remember to:

  1. Take an active role on social media.
  2. Like, comment, and share “See You in McAllen” posts and tweets.
  3. Use #SeeYouInMcAllen on your own business posts and tweets.
  4. Continue to deliver the warm welcomes and outstanding customer experiences our visitors (and locals) have always counted on when they come to McAllen!