11,400 expected tonight

Steamboat saw 12,200 at same time in 2002

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The arrival of 78 youth baseball teams from all over the United States fueled tourism in Steamboat Springs this week.

The lodging barometer published by the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association predicts that at least 11,400 people will check into area lodging properties tonight. That compares with 12,200 visitors on the corresponding Saturday in 2002, and is enough to boost occupancy at Steamboat's 19,150 guest pillows to 74 percent.

This is the fourth straight Saturday that the number of guests forecast to visit Steamboat has exceeded 10,000.

Many of the ball players and their families arrived Monday and Tuesday in anticipation of the start of tournament action Wednesday. The youngsters are age 9-16. They are taking part in the first of three Triple Crown World Series weekends here.

Downtown and mountain hotels will be very busy this weekend with occupancy levels above 85 percent. There was plenty of room at mountain condominiums as of Wednesday, with occupancy expected to be at 62 percent.

Triple Crown youth baseball returns to Steamboat July 30-Aug. 3 with teams in brackets for 10-, 14- and 18-year-olds. The third Triple Crown World Series will be here Aug. 6-10 for ballplayers ages 11 and 13.

The early forecast for tourism on July 30 is off significantly from the corresponding Wednesday in 2002. The chamber projects 7,600 people will be here Wednesday, compared with 10,400 on July 31, 2002.

The Chamber's lodging forecast is not a scientific poll, but a survey intended to help businesses determine their staffing levels.

-- To reach Tom Ross call 871-4205

or e-mail tross@steamboatpilot.com

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