News of this weekend's dual AFL finals was warmly received by footy fans, but the real boon from the matches is set to hit Northern Tasmania more broadly.
The never-before-seen offering of two huge finals saw Launceston offered its best opportunity to bounce back from a horror 18 months defined by the COVID-19 pandemic according to industry prime movers.
Launceston Chamber of Commerce chief executive David Peach said past examples of football played in Launceston were the proof in the pudding for the impact two two-game slate would have.
"Any time footy comes to town, it's a good day for Launnie," he said.
"Hotels become full, pubs gets business and cafes become busy."
Mr Peach said the games came at a welcome time, with borders remaining closed to COVID, and tourism, hotspots - Victoria and New South Wales.
He said ongoing border closures meant hospitality businesses were hurting, but remained hopeful a big weekend of finals football would be the antidote many of the businesses needed.
Tourism industry heavy-hitter Chris Griffin, the Visit Northern Tasmania chief executive, said there was no doubt the finals would make a huge difference to business in the north of the state, including tourism vendors who have been forced to keel over in recent weeks.
"This is an absolute ray of sunshine in regard to tourism," he said.
"It's a once in a lifetime opportunity and it will definitely have an echo effect on other industries when people have downtime either side of the games."
Mr Griffin said there were a "huge number of people pulling in the same direction" and "bending over backwards" to make the weekend as plentiful as it could be on such short notice.
The games were announced just six days before the first match, between Sydney and Greater Western Sydney, was due to be held.
Mr Griffin said despite the short turnaround, he was confident Northern Tasmania would put on a show.
"We can illustrate what we can do with finals, and how we can celebrate that even with the remarkably short notice," he said.
"As we aspire to upgrade UTAS Stadium to be the home of a Tasmanian AFL team, this will show how we can be that place."
With discussion about the potential for finals in Launceston to be included in the second week of the AFL's schedule, the revenue could continue to run for the north of the state.
But Mr Peach said it was imperative the weekend was supported by Tasmanians from across the state - in Hobart and across the East and West coasts.
The impacts to the industry were expected to be felt despite the impact the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions had on the games.
Launceston proved in previous AFL matches this year it could abide by public health orders and keenly support the teams competing at UTAS Stadium.
A spokesperson for the Tasmanian government said it was important those behaviours continued for at least another week.
The exisiting public health orders were set to stay as of Monday evening, with the spokesperson confirming all attendees were required to mask up and crowd number would be capped at 10,000. However, they said the cap was due to be assessed by public health in the lead up to the match.
As was the case with previous matches in Tasmania played by teams impacted by COVID-19 restrictions, teams were set to undergo strict protocols during their time in the state.
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