This weekend may bring traffic, but it’s good for economy

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) – This weekend marks one of the bigger event weekends across the Wabash Valley.

From the Scheid Diesel Extravaganza to the Downtown Block Party, it’s safe to expect a major influx of people into the Terre Haute metro area.

While most find this weekend a traffic problem, events like these actually keep Terre Haute thriving.

“Anytime there’s an event in town, especially of this magnitude, every hotel room in the town will be sold on Friday and Saturday night,” Bill Burdine from the Holiday Inn explained.

And with such an influx of visitors for this type of weekend, some businesses are even bringing in additional staff for support.

“We’ve got about 60 team members now and we’re actually looking to bring on some additional team members so hopefully we’ll have them ready trained by this weekend ready to go for the big crowds, ” said Derek Johnson from Chick Fil-A.

Employment is the key here: While the traffic and congestion may cause massive eye rolling across the area, the jobs are often forgotten in the shuffle.

Just between two businesses News 10 spoke with on Thursday, that’s around 200 jobs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, hotels and restaurants create jobs in Terre Haute for close to 10,000 people or about 14 percent of the work force.

“Without special events or people making an effort to put things on we’d have a lot less tax dollars in the community.”

Burdine also told News 10 the more than 300 rooms at the Holiday In. and Marriott Springhill have been sold out for weeks.

So, as tempted as you may be to lay on the horn this weekend, remember each truck, car or any vehicle stopping by Terre Haute keeps jobs afloat.

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