XENIA, Ohio (WDTN) – An amateur radio convention is expected to pump millions into the Greene County economy.
The event – known as Hamvention – is being held in Xenia for the first time, this up coming Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Kathleen Wright of the Greene County Convention & Visitors Bureau said event organizers are expecting more than 30,000 people to attend Hamvention.
That’s double the population of Xenia.
Wright said the county doesn’t have official figures for economic impact as the event has never been held in Greene County before, but in previous years, Hamvention has contributed millions.
“Hamvention have told us it’s an economic impact of about 14 million,” Wright said.
“Every hotel is filled… At night they’re going to be hitting the restaurants, they’re going to be gassing up their cars, they’re going to be – the people that are campers – they’re going to be out and about all over Xenia. So it’s going to be a big economic impact.”
Wright said hotel rooms in Greene County and in neighboring counties have seen spikes in occupancy.
She said one Xenia hotel sold out within four hours of the announcement that Hamvention is coming to town.
Xenia city spokesperson Lee Warren said the city has spent hundreds of hours planning for the event.
The city will spend some $20,000 dollars on public safety overtime to ensure residents and guests are safe.
They’ve also been advising residents, through letters and online, of what to expect in terms of traffic and parking.
Street closures are not anticipated but residents are being warned about heavy traffic congestion.
“This is 30,000 people that will be coming to this area, and to my knowledge nothing like this has ever happened at this scale in the city of Xenia,” Warren said.
“Our biggest concern is that our residents know what the impact will be. So traffic wise, there’s going to be a major impact; Probably one that people in Xenia have never dealt with before.”
The most congested streets in Xenia during Hamvention will be: Detroit St., Purcell Ave., Northwest St., Galloway St., King St., and Hollywood Ave – according to the Xenia city website.
The busiest traffic will be seen on N Detroit St and S Detroit St, Friday 7-10 am & 3-7 pm, Saturday 2-6pm, and Sunday noon-4pm.
Wright said Hamvention has agreed to host the event in Xenia every year, for the next three years, but city and county officials are confident it will be extended far beyond that.