National Park Tourism in Kansas Creates $4.6 Million in Economic Benefit
New report shows visitor spending supports 64 jobs in Kansas
OMAHA, Neb. – A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows that 101,752 visitors to national parks in Kansas spent $4.6 million and supported 64 jobs in the state in 2012.
“The national parks of Kansas attract visitors from across the country and around the world and provide premiere historical, cultural, natural, and recreational experiences,” said NPS Midwest Regional Director Michael T. Reynolds. “This new report shows that national park tourism is a significant driver in the national economy - returning $10 for every $1 invested - and funding generated by national parks has a swift and direct positive impact on local economies in Kansas as well.”
The national parks in Kansas are: Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site, Topeka; Fort Larned National Historic Site, Larned; Fort Scott National Historic Site, Fort Scott; Nicodemus National Historic Site, Nicodemus; and Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Strong City.
“Fort Scott National Historic Site is proud to welcome visitors from across the country and around the world,” said Superintendent Betty Boyko. “We are delighted to share the story of this place and the experiences it provides and to use the park as a way to introduce our visitors to Fort Scott and all that it offers. “The fort recorded 25,034 visitors during 2014. Those people generated an estimated $414,500 for the local economy.”
The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by U.S. Geological Survey economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas and Christopher Huber and Lynne Koontz for the National Park Service. The report shows $14.7 billion of direct spending by 283 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported 243,000 jobs nationally, with 201,000 jobs found in these gateway communities, and had a cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy of $26.75 billion.
According to the report most visitor spending supports jobs in restaurants, grocery and convenience stores (39 percent), hotels, motels and B&Bs (27 percent), and other amusement and recreation (20 percent).
To download the report visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/socialscience/economics.cfm.
The report includes information for visitor spending by park and by state.
To learn more about national parks in Kansas and how the National Park Service works with Kansas communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, go to www.nps.gov/KANSAS.