Baseball’s Economic Impact Extends Far Beyond Spring Training in The Palm Beaches

The Palm Beaches is a top destination for a variety of sporting events, thanks to its state-of-the-art facilities and ideal year-round climate. Baseball, in particular, thrives here with two Major League Baseball (MLB) Spring Training facilities: Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium and CACTI Park of The Palm Beaches. These premier venues attract both amateur and professional events, reinforcing The Palm Beaches’ status as a hub for sports tourism.

Since 1998, The Palm Beaches has been home to Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, the first baseball complex in Florida to host two MLB teams – the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals – for Spring Training. In 2017, Palm Beach County introduced its second two-team facility with the opening of CACTI Park of The Palm Beaches, home to the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals.

“The Spring Training season embodies one of the most dynamic and special experiences for baseball enthusiasts,” said George Linley, Executive Director of the Palm Beach County Sports Commission. “It offers fans the opportunity to enjoy big-league games in scenic stadiums while fostering an intimate environment that encourages interaction with players and coaches.”

MLB Spring Training provides one of the largest tourism impacts for Palm Beach County and the entire state of Florida. It’s not only an incredible attraction for residents but also draws visitors from across the nation. Last year, an independent study commissioned by the Palm Beach County Sports Commission revealed that Spring Training in The Palm Beaches generated more than $79 million in economic impact. This significant contribution was fueled by over 238,000 fans, 53% of whom were nonresidents, resulting in 55,200 lodging room nights.

Beyond the impressive economic impact of MLB Spring Training, the region hosts numerous additional baseball events throughout the year. Both facilities are utilized year-round, maintaining The Palm Beaches as a premier destination for baseball. Last year alone, Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium and CACTI Park of The Palm Beaches hosted a combined 34 regional and national baseball events, including some of the largest nationwide tournaments and showcases of amateur baseball.

The events at these two stadiums last year accounted for about 20% of all sports related room nights generated in The Palm Beaches for over the last year. These amateur events averaged over 1,000 room nights per event, with the largest being the Men’s Senior Baseball League (MSBL) Fall Classic and the Perfect Game World Wood Bat (WWBA) World Championship, each producing over 9,000 room nights.

The MSBL Fall Classic is one of the largest amateur baseball tournaments for adults in the United States, uniquely featuring players aged 18 to over 60. The Palm Beach County Sports Commission has successfully bid to host the MSBL Fall Classic at CACTI Park of The Palm Beaches and Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium for the fifth consecutive year. These venues collectively offer 26 diamonds, accommodating 125 teams with over 2,000 athletes from across the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic, Colombia, and Peru.

The impact of baseball in Palm Beach County extends beyond economics. The Palm Beaches welcomes teams from multiple countries for various events. “The World Comes to The Palm Beaches” is an international baseball festival featuring more than 30 teams from over 15 countries. Participants experience The Palm Beaches through baseball, staying in county hotels and dining at local restaurants. Besides the competition, local baseball organizations host practices, clinics, and activities, bringing players to multiple fields outside of the Spring Training facilities.

A variety of amateur baseball events take place between the two parks outside the MLB Spring Training season, including multiple events from leading baseball organizations, such as Prospect Select and Perfect Game tournaments. Additionally, CACTI Park of The Palm Beaches hosted one of baseball’s new special events: The Savannah Bananas Banana Ball World Tour, one of only four Spring Training locations on the tour, attracting over 1,600 room nights from spectators.

These amateur baseball events provided tremendous economic benefits last year by attracting 1,340 teams, over 24,000 athletes, and 45,000 spectators. These premier events generated 54,504 room nights, contributing an additional $38 million to the local economy.