• Visitors bask in a golden sunset at Dickey Ridge Visitor Center in Shenandoah National Park

    Shenandoah

    National Park Virginia

Shenandoah National Park equals visitors and money and jobs for local economy

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Date: February 28, 2012

A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows that more than 1,253,000 visitors in 2010 spent approximately $71.8 million in Shenandoah National Park and in communities near the park. That spending supported 1087 jobs in the local area.

"The people and the business owners in communities near national parks have always known their economic value," park superintendent Martha Bogle said. "Shenandoah National Park is clean, green fuel for the engine that drives our local economy."

Most of the spending/jobs are related to lodging, food, and beverage service (52 percent) followed by other retail (29 percent), entertainment/amusements (10 percent), gas and local transportation (7 percent) and groceries (2 percent).

The figures are based on $12 billion of direct spending by 281 million visitors in 394 national parks and nearby communities and are included in an annual, peer-reviewed, visitor spending analysis conducted by Dr. Daniel Stynes of Michigan State University for the National Park Service.

Across the U.S, local visitor spending added a total of $31 billion to the national economy and supported more than 258,000 jobs, an increase of $689 million and 11,500 jobs over 2009.

To download the report visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/socialscience/products.cfm#MGM and click on Economic Benefits to Local Communities from National Park Visitation and Payroll, 2010.

The report includes information for visitor spending at individual parks and by state.

For more information on how the NPS is working in Virginia, go tohttp://www.nps.gov/virginia.

Did You Know?

A sea of green flora in this Big Meadows photo - just a small sample of  the many plant species found here.

The Big Meadows area has the highest concentration of rare plants in Shenandoah National Park.