Northampton planning on ways to attract MGM Springfield visitors to city


MGM Springfield is set to open in a few months and the City of Northampton wants a cut of the action.

The City of Northampton has signed a contract with Rhyme Digital of Easthampton, a marketing company to help attract MGM Springfield casino visitors. 

“It’s really just showcasing what’s great about Northampton,” President of Rhyme Digital, Blair Winans said. “It has a great downtown, nightlife, dining, and entertainment. There is always something to do.”

Rhyme Digital will help the city develop a marketing plan over the next 14 weeks.

They’ll be collecting and analyzing data, and coming up with a plan that ensures Northampton doesn’t lose business to MGM. 

The $15,000 contract is funded with part of a $100,000 grant from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.

More than 20,000 more people are expected in Springfield once MGM opens in August. Northampton Mayor David Narkewicz said he’s optimistic about bringing some of those people to the City of Northampton.

“I think that we are a very unique destination,” Narkewicz said. “I think that’s why so many people come here on the weekends. We can try to create what Northampton has but really what makes Northampton special is it’s organic.”

The marketing research will include focus groups to get opinions and take the pulse of the community. 

The program will end in early August, a few weeks before the MGM-Springfield casino opens on August 24. 

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