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Contact: Eric Leonard, Andersonville NHS , 229-924-0343 ext 201
Contact: Steve Theus, Jimmy Carter NHS , 229-824-4104 ext 42
Report shows visitor spending supports 136 jobs in local economy
AMERICUS, GEORGIA – A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows that 166,225 visitors to Andersonville National Historic Site and Jimmy Carter Historic Site in 2013 spent $9.2 million in communities near the parks. That spending supported 136 jobs in the local area.
"Andersonville National Historic Site and Jimmy Carter National Historic Site are proud to welcome visitors from across the country and around the world," said acting superintendents Eric Leonard and Chris Abbett. "We are delighted to share the story of these places and the experiences it provides and to use the parks as a way to introduce our visitors to this part of the country and all that it offers. National park tourism is a significant driver in the national economy - returning $10 for every $1 invested in the National Park Service - and it's a big factor in our local economy as well. We appreciate the partnership and support of our neighbors and are glad to be able to give back by helping to sustain local communities."
The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by U.S. Geological Survey economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas, Christopher Huber, and Lynne Koontz for the National Park Service. The report shows $14.6 billion of direct spending by 273.6 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported more than 237,000 jobs nationally, with more than 197,000 jobs found in these gateway communities, and had a cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy of $26.5 billion.
"Sumter County is Georgia's epicenter to heritage tourism as home to both Andersonville National Historic Site and Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, both of which have a high historical significance," said Kevin Langston, deputy commissioner of tourism for the Georgia Department of Economic Development. "Having these two spectacular parks in this close proximity is a great offering for visitors, as well as a powerful economic generator that positively impacts the surrounding community."
In 2013, 98,770 visitors to Andersonville NHS spent $ 5.4 million in communities near the park; that spending supported 81 jobs in the local area.In 2013, 67,455 visitors to Jimmy Carter NHS spent $3.7 million in communities near the park; supporting 55 jobs in the local area. According to the 2013 economic analysis, most visitor spending was for lodging (30.3 percent) followed by food and beverages (27.3 percent), gas and oil (12.1 percent), admissions and fees (10.3 percent) and souvenirs and other expenses (10 percent).
The largest jobs categories supported by visitor spending were restaurants and bars (50,000 jobs) and lodging (38,000 jobs).
To download the report visit http://www.nature.nps.gov/socialscience/economics.cfm
The report includes information for visitor spending at individual parks and by state.
To learn more about national parks in Georgia and how the National Park Service works with Georgia communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, go to www.nps.gov/georgia.