Recreation revenue key to Western Slope economy
15 billion dollars brought to Colorado in 2012
Recent reports discovered that Colorado's natural wonders are helping the state bring in the cash. On a national level, outdoor recreational activities have more Americans working than the oil, gas and technology industries combined.
Last year, 15 billion of dollars of revenue related to recreation was brought into Colorado. The Western Slope is also seeing that benefit and tourism officials are doing their best to capitalize. About one million dollars have be received from recreational tax.
19 year-old Grand Junction resident Keenan Hall and his buddies get together often to rock climb. They are part of the of the sixty-five percent of Coloradans who participate in outdoor recreation every year.
Keenan Hall said, "I think I've spent at the very most two-hundred dollars on all of my equipment."
Some rock climbing equipment is cheap like shoes and powder, but the pads the climbers land on are around $150.
Hall also said he brings friends from Colorado Mesa University, "We actually have a couple of people that we climb with from out of town that we usually meet them through the college and go climbing with them."
Marketing Coordinator of Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau Mistalynn Meyeraan said many non-locals are attracted to the Western Slope for major events which her company provides. The business does most of their advertising on their website. Last fall, the Visitor Bureau hosted the inaugural "tour of the moon" bike race which was one of several annual recreational events bringing in the cash.
Meyeraan said, "Just alone that one event brought in roughly $750,000 into the community for that weekend because people are coming in from all over the united states. we actually had thirty-seven states represented."
She says these packaged events help tourism centers partner with local business. This increases revenue for everyone in the valley as recreation isn't just a hobby anymore its a growing industry for Colorado.
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