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Garfield, AR- A new National Park Service (NPS) report shows 104,686 visitors to Pea Ridge National Military Park in 2014 spent $5,871,200.00 in communities near the park. The spending supported 100 jobs in the local area and had a cumulative benefit to the local economy of $7,686,900.00.
"Pea Ridge NMP welcomes visitors from across the country and around the world," said Superintendent Kevin Eads." "We are delighted to share the story of this place and the experiences it provides. We also feature the park 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 the local economy as well. For example, each person that visited the park last year spent $56.08 in communities near the park and, on average, provided $73.43 to the local economy. To top it off, the park's visitation increased, over 2013 levels, by more than 9,000 people last year. Our visitors are drawn to the park for its history and to Northwest Arkansas for its beauty, friendly people, and inviting towns and cities. It is because of this that we appreciate the partnerships and support of our neighbors and are glad to be able to give back by helping to sustain the local communities."
The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by U.S. Geological Survey economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas and Christopher Huber and National Park Service economist Lynne Koontz. The report shows $15.7 billion of direct spending by 292.8 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. The spending supported 277,000 jobs nationally;235,600 of those jobs are found in these gateway communities. The cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy was $29.7 billion.
According to the 2014 report, most park visitor spending was for lodging (30.6 percent) followed by food and beverages (20.3 percent), gas and oil (11.9 percent), admissions and fees (10.2 percent) and souvenirs (9.9 percent).
To download the report visit https://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 Arkansas and how the National Park Service works with Arkansas communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, go to www.nps.gov/Arkansas.
Pea Ridge National Military Park preserves the site of and commemorates the March 1862 Civil War battle that helped Union forces maintain control of the state of Missouri. The park is located 10 miles north of Rogers on US highway 62.