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

3 months 2 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
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Board of Adjustment will hear from the public Tuesday morning about issuing a conditional... More >>
10 hours ago Tuesday, December 12 2017 Dec 12, 2017 Tuesday, December 12, 2017 6:42:00 AM CST December 12, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - It's a topic that many people shy away from, but one man came to Columbia to talk about... More >>
21 hours ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 8:25:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Terron Wings says he considers himself blessed he can now call himself an “American taxpayer.” Wings, 37,... More >>
22 hours ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 7:27:27 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- A Special Olympics Missouri plan nearly a decade in the making could become a reality as soon as... More >>
22 hours ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 7:12:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in Sports
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Board of Education voted to approve ballot language for a $30 million bond issue Monday night... More >>
22 hours ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 7:01:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – High winds and dry conditions warranted additional safety precautions for fire safety Monday in central Missouri. The... More >>
23 hours ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 6:04:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
RENICK – The Beamer family was on the porch of their Randolph County home at the beginning of the storm... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 5:21:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
ROCHEPORT - Consolidated Water issued a boil order advisory for parts of Howard County Monday due to a water main... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 4:29:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
ORONOGO (AP) — Homeowners living near a gun range in southwest Missouri are concerned about stray bullets that have been... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 3:32:30 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - When someone goes to the doctor for a checkup, they might expect the regular look at their eyes,... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 3:15:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri is using mobile pantries to provide food to areas that... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 3:00:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri's attorney general is weighing whether to appoint a special investigator to check into use of... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 2:45:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - One MU Nursing School program has reduced the number of nursing home patients from hospitalization by nearly 50... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 2:24:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- The Missouri Attorney General's office is forming an advisory board to develop the first statewide program in Missouri that... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 12:22:00 PM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The city plans to begin repairing base failures in the Thornbrook Subdivision beginning Dec. 11 at 8 a.m.... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 11:34:00 AM CST December 11, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A Missouri state representative has filed more legislation which would redefine "marriage" as a "contract of domestic... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 11:22:00 AM CST December 11, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Monday is the final day to donate to Columbia Parks and Recreation’s Almeta Crayton Memorial Toy Drive. ... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 10:58:00 AM CST December 11, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens says he wants his five new appointees to the state veterans... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 11 2017 Dec 11, 2017 Monday, December 11, 2017 10:50:00 AM CST December 11, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 31°
6pm 32°
7pm 31°
8pm 30°
9pm 30°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

5:30p
NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt
6:00p
KOMU 8 News @ 6
6:30p
Wheel of Fortune
5:30p
American Dad!
6:00p
Family Guy
6:30p
Family Guy

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Voice
8:00p
Gwen Stefani's You Make It Feel Like Christmas
9:00p
Chicago Med
7:00p
Greatest Holiday Commercials Countdown 2017
8:00p
The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld