Concessions lost $43,000 last year at football games

Editors note: This story has been edited for accuracy.

Central Michigan football attendance numbers last year were the worst in years, and concession sales felt the pain.

After coming off a year where CMU concessions turned a profit, things turned downhill fast. Nikki Smith, marketing manager for campus dining, said CMU lost of $43,900 last season, compared to their sales the previous year.

“Concessions fluctuate for a variety of reasons,” Smith said in an email. “Including strength of schedule, date of games, weather, day of week, win/loss record, number of games, etc.”

The past two years the football team has been 3-9 each season. Last season, CMU had three midweek games, which contributed to the low attendance that trickles into lower concessions.

“I don’t know or have attendance numbers, but it’s no secret if attendance is lower I’d expect concessions to drop, too,” CMU athletics director Dave Heeke said a few weeks ago.

In 2009, when CMU won the Mid-American Conference, attendance dropped to 15,328, more than 5,000 below the year before. The concessions numbers reflected the attendance drop.

CMU lost $31,000 on concessions in 2009 compared to the season before.

Smith stated how in 2009 CMU had “three Saturday games as well, but they were against teams that didn’t draw the same crowd as the three Saturday games in 2008.”

She went on to say how the final game of the season was played the Friday after Thanksgiving. So even though the MAC title hopes were on the line, concessions suffered poor attendance.

Smith did say that mid-week games don’t always result in poor concession nights.

“The last game of the year (in 2008) was on a Wednesday night, which typically results in lower sales,” Smith said. “But we still had good sales because of the team's winning records.”

Smith said concessions also go down when the Saturday games aren’t played at noon or 1 p.m. Both Saturday home games this season began after 3 p.m.

Year       Over previous year

2011      (-)$43,900

2010     (+)$700

2009    (-)$31,000

2008    (+)$12,900


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