Crossfit Games expected to bring Madison $12 million in revenue

MADISON, Wis. – After Coronavirus restrictions forced the Crossfit games to move elsewhere in a restricted capacity during the summer of 2020, they’re back in Madison once again.

Beginning Monday, the games will transform the Alliant Energy Center campus into a world class competition on strength and stamina.

The week of the Crossfit Games is one part rock concert, one part backyard barbecue, one part Olympic spectacle,” said Crossfit VP Justin Bergh. “It’s a super high energy atmosphere. It’s also very welcoming and kind of inclusive environment where it feels welcoming and friendly.”

Bergh said after a year where many gyms were forced to close, having the event back is significant for a multitude of reasons.

It means a lot to us,” he said. “This, for us, is bringing our community back together.”

For Madison, it means getting back not only an event, but a source of revenue.

The Crossfit Games are a $12 million a year economic impact to our community,” said Jamie Patrick of the Madison Area Sports Commission. “You really put your blood sweat and tears into the event, and want to make it for all these visitors coming into town.”

Patrick says the millions in revenue are spread throughout multiple parts of the city.

There’s going to be 660 competitors, typically we’ve had 55,000 spectators come in and watch people reach their peak performance,” he said. “Lodging, hotels, restaurants, gas stations for sure…even grocery stores see an unusual impact.”

Bergh says while Dane County’s high vaccination rate means they’ll be able to hold the event the way they had in years past, getting the hundreds of athletes from other countries to America proved to be a challenge.

Live events are by their very nature, hard. They don’t fall off of a conveyor belt,” Bergh said. “The biggest challenge for us is that we bring people in from around the world, so one of the biggest issues that we had is that a large number of our athletes come from outside the United States, and there were travel bans that prevented them from leaving their country and coming here to the United States.”

Still, Berg says they’re ready to host the event in its full force once more.

We run events all over the world, and Madison really is unique in the way that they host and welcome people into the city. We have over 100 events we run around the world and Madison is our favorite place to run events,” he said. 

Tickets for the Crossfit Games are still available. Children 12 and under get in free. You can find a link to tickets here.