Archived Story

The annual salute to travel and tourism

Published 4:45pm Saturday, April 28, 2012

Locally, tourism equates to more than $11.1 billion put into the state economy, bringing significant revenue dollars into communities throughout the state, like Austin.

Austin and Mower County benefit from the many jobs created in the travel and tourism industry. Total job count puts tourism right next to agriculture in growth and in it’s contribution to the gross state product.

The first full week of May is annually recognized as National Travel and Tourism Week, a tradition first celebrated in 1984.

Localized events are presented in cities, states and travel businesses nationwide to champion the power of travel. It was established as National Tourism Week when the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution in 1983 designating the week to be celebrated in May. In a White House ceremony,

President Ronald Reagan signed a Presidential Proclamation urging citizens to observe the week with “the appropriate ceremonies and activities.”

Since its establishment, the U.S. travel community has collectively marked the event in a number of creative ways, from staging local rallies and conducting media outreach to securing proclamations and resolutions from local legislative bodies.

Over the years, your Austin CVB has hosted events like the popular “Be a Tourist in Your Own Town” event, and have promoted the City-Wide Rummage Sale Day for the past 10 years, in partnership with the Austin Daily Herald.

This year, the Sale Day falls on Saturday, May 5. Our phone has been ringing for months inquiring when this event will be held, so I’m predicting there will be alot of sales to shop.

For the past five years now, your Austin CVB has been awarding Austin’s Tourism Toplist and recognizing the person, place, thing, event or cause that most helped promote tourism to our southern Minnesota region.

Who will win this year? Can you guess? Be watching the media releases during the week of May 7-11 to find out who gets the special award, plaque and recognition this year!

 Travel and tourism is one of America’s largest industries

•Generated $1.9 trillion in economic output, with $813 billion spent directly by domestic and international travelers that spurred an additional $1.1 trillion in other industries.

•Directly generated $124 billion in tax revenue for local, state and federal governments.

•Each U.S. household would pay $1,055 more in taxes without the tax revenue generated by the travel and tourism industry.

•Direct spending by resident and international travelers in the U.S. averaged $2.2 billion a day, $92.8 million an hour, $1.5 million a minute and $25,700 a second.

 Travel, tourism is America’s largest services export industry

•$152.4 billion in travel exports (including traveler spending in the U.S. and international passenger fare payments to U.S. carriers) and the…

•$110.5 billion in travel imports (including U.S. resident spending abroad and international passenger fares paid to foreign carriers) creates…

•$42 billion in balance of travel trade surplus for the U.S.

 Travel and tourism is one of America’s largest employers

•Supported 14.4 million jobs, including 7.5 million directly in the travel industry and 6.9 million in other industries.

•1 out of every 9 jobs in the U.S. depends on travel and tourism.

•Generated $194.6 billion in payroll for those employed directly in U.S. travel.

•Travel is among the top 10 industries in 48 states and D.C. in terms of employment

What is the best way to celebrate National Tourism Week in Austin, you ask?

Visit the numerous City-Wide Rummage Sales on May 5, make time to visit several of our local attractions like the SPAM Museum, the Mower County Historical Society collections, The Hormel Institute, Historic Paramount Theatre, Hormel Historic Home and the dozens of other fantastic places that all of our visitors come here to see. Become a Tourist in your own Town.

Happy National Tourism Week.

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