- Associated Press - Monday, December 17, 2018

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, Ill. (AP) - A Chicago suburb’s decision to sponsor a nationally televised college football bowl game in the Bahamas has won over some residents and local merchants despite receiving mixed reactions after the announcement last summer.

Kathy Jarosch, who operates Jarosch Bakery in Elk Grove Village, told The Daily Herald that she believes the village’s $300,000 sponsorship of the Dec. 21 Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl in Nassau is “putting Elk Grove on the map.”

“I know sometimes you have to spend money to get money,” she said. “So I’m going to hope that the risk of spending money brings a good response.”

Debbie Handler, who owns the Elk Grove Bowl bowling alley, said she also supports the sponsorship decision.

“What the mayor and trustees do to try to bring recognition to our town is really very positive,” she said. “The more businesses that move to this area, the lower the taxes are for residents, so I would think that it’s a good thing all around.”



The sponsorship makes the village the first non-tourist municipality to sponsor a bowl game, according to ESPN. Multiple local businesses and officials will attend the game to promote the village.

The move is the village’s latest marketing push to expand the reach of its “Makers Wanted” campaign to promote a local industrial park, which officials say has more than 5,600 businesses.

Resident Matt Matusiak said he’s still skeptical of the decision and believes it’s a “waste of taxpayer money.” He said the money should’ve been spent on police services or surveillance cameras for a local business park.

Resident Ron Braun said the idea might have been better received if the village had sponsored a game that was easier for residents to attend or one that featured teams that are more recognizable in the Midwest. The Bahamas Bowl will feature Florida International University and the University of Toledo.

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Information from: Daily Herald, http://www.dailyherald.com

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