Guest Editorial: Scottsdale’s Card in Arizona’s Winning Hand

By Recker McDowell —

WestWorld of Scottsdale has been named facility of the year by the League of Agricultural and Equine Centers.

WestWorld hosts top equestrian events including the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show and Arizona Quarter Horse Association events. It also hosts the Barrett-Jackson and its World Greatest Collector Auction.

The League honor is the latest accolade for the Scottsdale venue. Barrett-Jackson and the equestrian events help make WestWorld into a major tourism and economic driver in the state.

WestWorld has a $183.6 million economic benefit for the state and hosts close to 917,000 visitors each year, according to a study last year by Arizona State University.

Arizona has scores of premier events and venues including State Farm Stadium which will again host the Super Bowl and is in the rotation for College Football Playoff games.

But don’t count out WestWorld from the list of most economically important venues.

WestWorld is one of the most economically important venues in the state. Its events attract tourists and their spending. The Scottsdale managed facility also hosts concerts, youth sports and community events.

The community and city should keep that in mind as we look at current and future investments at WestWorld. Bonds approved by Scottsdale voters in November make important repairs and improvements at WestWorld.

Those will help the venue keeping hosting events and attract even activity. WestWorld is the only North American location in the running to host the Federation Equestre Internationale World Championships in 2022.

One of Arizona’s big tourism and economic calling cards are its events, including Barrett-Jackson and the recently completed Waste Management Phoenix Open.

WestWorld is an important part of that winning hand.