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Thursday, May 10, 2018

2017 Traveler Spending Up in the Greater St. Croix Valley

2017 traveler spending in St. Croix County increased $110.6 million (+4.11% from 2016) according to an annual analysis released May 4th by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism. St. Croix’s $110.6 million from travelers resulted in total business sales of $182.6 million, reflecting a 3.72% increase from 2016. This spending supported an estimated 1,954 jobs (+2.37% from 2016) in St. Croix and generated $13.9 million in state and local tax revenues (+3.73% from 2016).
Statewide, travelers spent an estimated $12.7 billion in 2017, a 3.17% increase from 2016.  Total business sales from tourists were estimated at $20.607 billion (+3.2% increase from 2016).  Tourism and traveler-supported employment in Wisconsin in 2017 was estimated at 195,255 jobs (+0.93% from 2016). Tourism also provided the state with tax revenues of $1.536 billion in 2017 (+2.20% increase from 2016).
St. Croix, Polk, Pierce, and Dunn counties comprise the Greater St. Croix Valley. Visitor spending in 2017 for the 4-county region was estimated at $272.4 million compared to $261.2 million in 2016 (+4.28% from 2016). In addition to St. Croix’s estimated $110.6 million, 2017 visitor and traveler spending in Polk increased to $87.3 million (+4.47% from 2016). Spending in Dunn County for 2017 was estimated at $45.8 million, compared to 45.5 million in 2016 (+0.73% from 2016). Pierce County’s spending from travelers increased to 28.7 million from $25.9 million in 2016 (+10.84%). Because of the Greater St. Croix Valley’s proximity to the 16-county Twin Cities metro area, many visitors enjoy day trips to the Valley and return to their homes without incurring expenses on lodging. Overnight stays would greatly increase traveler spending in the Greater St. Croix Valley.
Total business sales from travelers and visitors to the Greater St. Croix Valley in 2017 were estimated at $450.2 million compared to $433.7 million in 2016 (a +3.80% increase). Business sales in St. Croix County were estimated at $182.6 million (+3.69% increase from 2016), followed by $131.8 million in Polk (+4.02% increase from 2016), $82.4 million in Dunn (+1.73% from 2016), and $53.4 million $49.9 million in Pierce (7.01% from 2016).
Tourism-related employment in the Greater St. Croix Valley for 2017 was estimated at 4,325 jobs (+1.79% from 2016). In addition to the estimated 1,954 tourism-related jobs in St. Croix, there were 1,098 in Polk (+2.57% from 2016), 837 in Dunn (-1.44% from 2016), and 436 in Pierce (+3.66% from 2016).
State and local tax revenues attributable to visitors and travelers in the Greater St. Croix Valley for 2017 were estimated at $32.1 million (+2.88% from 2016). Tax revenues in St. Croix were estimated at $13.9 million, followed by Polk with $9.1 million, Dunn with $5.8 million, and Pierce with $3.3 million.
Milwaukee is the state’s top county for visitor spending estimated at $1.990 billion. The other counties in the Top 10 include Dane ($1.246 billion in visitor spending); Sauk ($1.086 billion); Waukesha ($776.4 million); Brown ($671.0 million); Walworth ($544.2 million); Door ($358.7 million); Outagamie ($348.0 million); La Crosse ($263.8 million); and  Winnebago (240.7 million).
Tourism is one of Wisconsin’s top three industries along with manufacturing and agriculture.
For additional information, or to read the 2017 Economic Impact of Tourism in Wisconsin go to
http://industry.travelwisconsin.com/research/economic-impact and select the topic: “County Total Impact”.

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