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Cleveland: Lots at stake in upcoming Senior Games

1:25 AM, Jul 19, 2013   |    comments
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  • CLEVELAND -- The Senior Games begin this Friday.

    While older athletes sporting a lot of gray will be going for the gold, silver and bronze, the main color for Greater Cleveland will be green.

    It's the debut event for the new Convention Center.

    Almost 11,000 athletes from all 50 states and a total of 30,000 visitors will descend on the city to compete in sports at 21 venues.

    It's estimated they will have a direct economic impact of $35 million. That's hotel rooms, restaurant meals, visits to tourist spots.

    But it's also lots of business for companies and jobs for workers.

    Aable Rents is providing bleachers and tents for many locations.

    Aable's Zane Gloer says,"We're getting a ton of work. We have to bring in other companies in Cleveland. This is a big lift for the economy and all our companies."

    Anthony Delguyd is Steward for the Decorators' Union.

    His members are getting paychecks setting up parts of the Athletes' Village at the Convention Center near the exhibits of main sponsors Humana and AstraZaneca.

    "There's a lot of guys who are grateful because they haven't worked in a couple years. Everybody's making a little something," he said.

    The event will be the the first big road test of the new Convention Center.

    Spokesman Dave Johnson says, "What a great way to open the building and a daunting way to open the building. This is a lot of people and a lot of moving parts."

    The almost 11,000 athletes are more than competed in the London Olympics.

    Positively Cleveland's David Gilbert is looking forward to showcasing all the new facilities Downtown.

    "If we can have a network of 30,000 people going back spreading the word about Cleveland, that's more valuable than any advertising we can do," he said.

    Related: Road closures for Senior Games

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