Preparations for ‘historic’ Army-Navy game underway in Providence
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — Rhode Island leaders outlined plans Monday for Providence to serve as a hub for those travelling to the 2023 Army-Navy game at Gillette Stadium.
The Rhode Island Convention Center will host at least 3,000 Navy Midshipmen overnight. Barrack-style bedding is expected.
“We’ll have people from all over the world,” said Gov. Dan McKee Monday. “The last I heard was 40,000 of the tickets have already been sold to people outside of New England.”
During a press conference Monday, state officials, like former Congressman Ron Machtley, said they expect businesses to boom downtown as a result.
Machtley, a former Midshipman himself, explained, “This is the first time in a 124-year tradition that [midshipmen] are expecting an overnight. They’ll be looking for the best fun wherever they can find it, and it might be outside of these walls.”
Representatives for the game said it is too early to tell how much money this will bring to Providence and other Rhode Island communities. However, Philadelphia reported roughly a $30 million influx.
Kristen Adamo, a representative of the Rhode Island Convention Center, said they will still face the same challenges of a large-scale event.
“Traffic, road closures, and things like that,” Adamo added. “The best way to tackle that is to be open and communicative. When you’re housing that many military personnel, security is going to be very tight, and we just have to communicate that with people.”
She said there is a safety and security committee in place to safeguard the midshipmen.
Representatives of the state, game, and convention center also said more events for visitors of Providence will be announced soon.