Birmingham is getting ready to host the 71st Annual Magic City Classic football game.
Thursday, city leaders toured the football game's home, Legion Field. Mayor William Bell says the game, and events leading up to it, are a major impact for the local economy.
Last year, he says the Classic's impact was $24 million. The annual game between Alabama State and Alabama A&M brings in thousands of visitors each year to the city. Bell says they want to make sure the city and Legion Field are ready.
"This marks the 85th year of Legion Field as a facility in our community and while the 'Old Gray Lady' might be a little tattered and torn, she's still lovely when you put on lipstick and makeup. And that's what we're gonna make sure she has on all of her lipstick and all of her makeup to really show the country what a first class event this can be," Bell said.
Mayor Bell says corporate sponsors have really helped make the Classic what it is today.
This year, Ebony and Jet magazines are joining in, sponsoring scholarships for both schools, and helping create an end zone area similar to "The Zone" at Bryant-Denny stadium at UA in Tuscaloosa.
The Magic City Classic football game is set for Saturday, Oct. 27.
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