Solar eclipse tourism could bring more than $1 million to Columbia

7 months 3 weeks 5 days ago Wednesday, August 23 2017 Aug 23, 2017 Wednesday, August 23, 2017 3:39:00 PM CDT August 23, 2017 in Eclipse Impact
By: Daniel Litwin, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA – The solar eclipse has come and gone, and Columbia is saying the once-in-a-lifetime event brought around $1.36 million into the city.

For now, Columbia’s Convention and Visitors Bureau can only approximate based on two city-sponsored events Monday at Gans Creek and Cosmo Park.

The bureau reached this estimate by calculating the number of cars at each event, which gives an idea of how many people were in attendance.

“We had about 2000 parking spaces full at Cosmo Park. If you put those numbers together, about three and a half people per car, that’s roughly about 8000 people,” said Convention and Visitors Bureau director Amy Schneider. "At Gans Creek we had about 250 spaces full. That’s about 875 people."

The bureau's multiple marketing effectiveness studies shows people spent around $537 this weekend.

So that figure combined with more than 2500 vehicles, and it appears Columbia did quite well during the eclipse.

“What we’re looking at when we talk about a party spend is lodging, any restaurants they may have gone to the day before, retail, gas spent,” Schneider said.

This estimate doesn’t take in to account the city's 470 Airbnb rentals or attendance at any other events.

“From conversations, I know city parks were filled as well as multiple other events with visitors that also contributed to the economic impact in the city,” Schneider said.

Hotels in Columbia were just as full as the city's parks and events.

"It's just like a graduation weekend," said Steve Bales, general manager of the Wingate Hotel.

The Wingate Hotel was 100 percent booked for the eclipse weekend and made around $18,000. Bales, president of the Columbia Missouri Hospitality Association, said hotel managers across the city were so booked, they were "banking on no-shows."

"[Managers were] asking 'hey, do you guys have any rooms available in case we have to walk some people,' because a lot of them oversold for the event," Bales said.

Though this is just the first estimate, Schneider said she’s not complaining from the result.

“Anyone would think $1.3 million is good,” Schneider said. “We didn’t know what to expect, so we were very pleased with the numbers that were there.”

"Events like this help us support all the hoteliers, the restaurants, the taxis. It's good for the economy," Bales said.

Final numbers for the solar eclipse’s economic impact should be available in late September after sales and lodging taxes are calculated.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - A potential fire station project on an annexed lot in southwest Columbia could lead to quicker response times... More >>
3 minutes ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:21:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - After the deadly fire in Osage, officials from the Division of Fire Safety are working to remind... More >>
23 minutes ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 3:01:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For 13 years, Rhonda Harper has been at the helm of Lincoln University's "Marching Musical Storm." ... More >>
58 minutes ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 2:26:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - It’s been a little more than two months since the Stoneman Douglas school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 2:04:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a suburban St. Louis police officer fired at a would-be robber about four weeks... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 1:35:11 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Lab tests on an unknown substance sent to a Missouri lawmaker suggest it was pesticide.... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 1:31:19 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- Slimy fish, boat rides, hiking and tasty leaves are a few things 4th grade students experienced on Friday. ... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 12:59:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Assistant Principal Katie Helfer said it has been a long time coming, but Our Lady of Lourdes Interparish... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 12:21:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in Top Stories
LEE'S SUMMIT (AP) — Lee's Summit police are looking for a suspect after a woman was fatally shot inside... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:57:58 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
CLARKSBURG - Deputies arrested a man Wednesday after they said they found marijuana, drug paraphernalia and cocaine. Deputies went... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:54:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police have arrested a third suspect in relation to a March 26 shots fired incident in the... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:21:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA – Marijuana advocates chose 4/20 as their day to celebrate, but this year, those in Missouri are hoping Nov.... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:16:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Authorities say a Springfield man charged with fleeing from officers and causing a deadly Springfield crash had... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 9:35:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — The University of Missouri-Kansas City plans to eliminate 17 academic and administrate jobs. The Kansas... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 9:30:21 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Missouri National Education Association held a rally on Friday commemorating the 19th anniversary of the Columbine... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 9:27:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A homeless man has been convicted in the stabbing and beating death of a Springfield woman... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 9:25:18 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
OSAGE COUNTY - The Osage Sheriff's Office arrested a wanted felon out of Callaway County Thursday night. According to... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 8:51:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
CENTRALIA - Two people were arrested for drug trafficking in Centralia Thursday night. According to the Centralia Police Department,... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 8:04:00 AM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 62°
4pm 64°
5pm 63°
6pm 63°
7pm 60°