Fans and famous faces help boost local economy during Super 7 ch - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Fans and famous faces help boost local economy during Super 7 championship games

Thousands of fans are cheering in Jordan-Hare Stadium for the 14 best high school football teams in the state of Alabama.

It's Alabama's first ever Super 7 championship games and as the players compete for the title, it's also big win for the area's economy.

"This is bringing about $4 million to the Auburn/Opelika. With seven classifications, with the addition of 7A, it went from about $2.5 million to $3 million in the course of three days," explains coordinator, D. Mark Mitchell.

Mitchell, the voice of the Opelika High School Bulldogs, Auburn councilmen Ron Anders and the Auburn-Opelika Tourism Bureau began working in 2008 to bring this event to Auburn.

Six years of preparation, with an investment of $100,000, and the help of 300 volunteers is making a once in life opportunity possible for these young players.

"It's incredible to see their eyes. We have a Tiger Walk for them, they use the dressing rooms, the eagle flies before the game, and it's a great experience," says Mitchell.

Between hotels, gas and dining, an estimated 50,000 fans are also pouring millions back into the economy.

One of those fans, Sadie Robertson of Duck Dynasty, was on the sidelines of Jordan-Hare Thursday, December 4, cheering on her boyfriend.

"I'm here to see my boyfriend play in the state game. He plays for Madison Academy and he is the quarterback," says Robertson.

The 17-year-old reality star and Dancing With the Stars runner up just released her first book that offers advice about dating, while staying true to your faith.

"Just don't put yourself in situations that would be uncomfortable and that you have to say no to. I think that depends on the guy that you have and I'm lucky to have a great guy," explains Robertson.

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