Notre Dame historic home opener to boost local economy, fill local hotels

NOW: Notre Dame historic home opener to boost local economy, fill local hotels

SOUTH BEND, Ind.—-As the Fighting Irish hope to march on to victory this Saturday for their historic match against the Tennessee State Tigers, local businesses and hotels are marching into their busiest season of the year.

This will be the first time the Irish take on a historically black college or university, and they’ll do so for their home opener this season.

"We are so excited at the University of Notre Dame's campus and we are getting ready for such a historic matchup on the field. Here at the Hammes bookstore, it's one of those things you can't replicate. [It's] the first on campus home game of the season, so were just excited to see everyone here and welcome them to the Notre Dame family,” said Annalisa Tombelli,  Sr. Marketing Program Manager at the University of Notre Dame.

Tombelli, representing the Hammes Notre Dame Book Store, reflects the excitement on the University of Notre Dame campus.

As the campus readies itself for this significant matchup, the Hammes bookstore was prepared to welcome fans from across the country seeking game day gear.

Shoppers at the Hammes bookstore are eagerly snagging their game day essentials ahead of the home opener.

The game marks a historical moment, being the first instance of the Fighting Irish competing against a historically black college or university.

"The Shirt" known as one of the highest-selling college athletic apparel items in the country, was already flying off the shelves.

While the Notre Dame prepared, local businesses and hotels beyond Eddy Street are equally gearing up for an influx of visitors.

Everyone home football game pumps approximately 26-million dollars into the Michiana economy.

Among these is the recently unveiled 23-story hotel at Four Winds Casino, that opened its doors in March.

Eager to welcome fans for their first football season, Tim Adams, Director of Sales and Marketing, highlights the impact of Notre Dame home games on the region.

He said they felt it before even with their New Buffalo location.

"There’s been quite a buzz for all the home game. Since we've opened for groups and people coming to town for the games, we're going to offer shuttles for our guest to avoid the parking hassle,” said Adams.

The hotel stands fully booked for the home opener and the Labor Day holiday weekend.

However, openings remain available for the rest of the football season.

The hotel offers shuttle services to home games and a variety of attractions to engage fans before and after matches, including live music, dining options and the last pool party of the year for Labor Day weekend.

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