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

2 years 6 months 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 lawsuit filed on Wednesday accuses the state of Missouri of failing to "provide poor people accused of... More >>
45 minutes ago Friday, February 28 2020 Feb 28, 2020 Friday, February 28, 2020 11:33:17 AM CST February 28, 2020 in News
It's a proven way to boost your mental health, and it's not another medication. Doctor Frank McGeorge explains exercise... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, February 28 2020 Feb 28, 2020 Friday, February 28, 2020 10:53:41 AM CST February 28, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA - Police responded to an incident early this morning on Paris Road, just south of Waco Road. Northbound... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, February 28 2020 Feb 28, 2020 Friday, February 28, 2020 7:45:00 AM CST February 28, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- Domestic violence perpetrators and those with orders of protection against them in St. Louis County, Missouri, will be... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, February 28 2020 Feb 28, 2020 Friday, February 28, 2020 5:54:00 AM CST February 28, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - For the last month, Stephens College has been collecting items for Rainbow House in Columbia, and they'll finally... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, February 28 2020 Feb 28, 2020 Friday, February 28, 2020 3:45:00 AM CST February 28, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – Columbia hosted its first affordable housing summit Thursday night. The summit offered residents a chance to learn... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 8:27:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police responded to a report of a strong-arm robbery that occurred in the parking lot at Sam's... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 5:14:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The opioid crisis throughout the United States can not be solved overnight. However, Missouri lawmakers are taking... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 4:33:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
WASHINGTON D.C. - The U.S. House of Representatives has just approved a bill that would expand opportunities for veterans to... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 4:24:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
RUSSELLVILLE - The Cole County Prosecutor and Cole County Sheriff's Office announced on Thursday the name of the man charged... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 3:24:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- Children's lives may not be as hard as adults' lives, but sometimes their moodiness and sadness are more... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 2:34:08 PM CST February 27, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA – Business owners say fears stemming from misinformation about the coronavirus are causing their business to unfairly take a... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 1:33:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
RUSSELLVILLE - The Cole County Prosecutor and Cole County Sheriff will hold a press conference Thursday afternoon with a break... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 1:01:00 PM CST February 27, 2020 in News
SEDALIA - Prosecutors have filed charges against two men in connection with a February 22 shooting that left one man... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 10:29:00 AM CST February 27, 2020 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - The Missouri State Highway Patrol is asking for assistance in an ongoing sexual assault investigation.... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 9:52:00 AM CST February 27, 2020 in News
MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say a part-time janitor has been charged with first-degree murder after shooting and killing... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 6:13:00 AM CST February 27, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia is a college town full of apartments and townhouses, but it wants to start giving low-income families... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, February 27 2020 Feb 27, 2020 Thursday, February 27, 2020 5:30:00 AM CST February 27, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced an investigation into a multi-state E. coli outbreak they believe... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, February 26 2020 Feb 26, 2020 Wednesday, February 26, 2020 10:51:00 PM CST February 26, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 44°
1pm 44°
2pm 45°
3pm 45°
4pm 46°