Columbus soccer tournament brings big crowd

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – Businesses in Columbus could see a big kick in sales this weekend.

The Bank first: Friendly City Shoot-Out soccer tournament takes the field at the Soccer Complex and Hotels and Restaurants are getting their teams ready to handle the crowds.

This may be an empty soccer field right now but just in a few days, there will be 73 teams lined up to go head to head in the Friendly City Shootout Tournament.

“Multiple teams multiple ages it’s going to be a great time with all of their fans and families. Their support teams will be here in Columbus and staying in the hotels and eating and it’s just going to be a big affair,” said Spears.

February 12th and 13th soccer teams from across the state will meet on the pitch at the Soccer Complex for the biggest tournament the city has hosted to date.

“The total amount that we expect to be here when you take players, coaches, court staff, and of course parents that come to watch there are about three thousand people that will be in town for this,” said Spears.

Tournament Director Jason Spears says the tournament will mean winners on the field.

“It is a competitive tournament you will have a finalist and you will have a champion and the champion for each of the age divisions will get a trophy and of course, they will get medals and the finalists will get medals,” said Spears.

But there will also be some big winners off the field too.

Doug Pellum, owner of Zachary’s is getting his team ready.

“We are staffing our staff levels up to the highest amount of people on schedule this weekend. We are expecting an overflow crowd Friday and Saturday,” said Pellum.

Big crowds mean big sales, but Pellum advises his regular clientele to be prepared.

“We are obviously going to be on a wait all weekend we feel very sure about that. We are going to get people fed as fast as possible take care of people and get them seated as quickly as we possibly can,” said Pellum.

There may only be one team left standing but players will leave with lifelong friends full bellies and memories.

Spears says that he is also working to recruit out-of-state teams for future tournaments.

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