ATTENTION MEDIA: Media is welcome to cover the Great American Outdoor Show. For media inquiries and interview request, please contact the NRA directly at NRAgoMedia@nrahq.org or call 703-267-1595.
Harrisburg, PA (December 30, 2016) – Tourism Officials at the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB) today released the results of the 3rd Annual Great American Outdoor Show (GAOS) held earlier this year at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center (FSC) in Harrisburg from February 6 – 14, 2016.
The bureau’s report revealed an estimated $75 million impact on the Hershey Harrisburg Region, a two percent (+2%) increase in the show’s overall economic impact from the previous year.
This year, tourism officials did not include an estimated attendance for the show, citing that show organizers do not publicly release information on ticket sales, per Rick Dunlap, spokesperson for HHRVB.
The bureau instead is reporting on the results of the show based on a regional lodging report the organization acquires from STR for the 10-day period of the annual show. STR is the leading information services and research company within the hotel industry.
The bureau then calculates the Estimated Economic Impact and Jobs Supported using an Event Impact Calculator developed for the travel & tourism industry by Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) and Tourism Economics, an Oxford Economics company.
HHRVB says it is not uncommon for a privately produced show to not publicly release attendance numbers. However, the bureau noted that show producers have alluded to their efforts for the coming years will be more focused on enhancing the show experience for attendees and vendors and less about growing attendance.
“More isn’t always better. Better is better,” said Dunlap. “This is already considered the largest consumer outdoor show in the country. So, we can appreciate that the producers are more focused now on building upon the overall experience for those attending the show with concerts, banquets and evening events.”
By focusing on delivering the highest quality experience for both attendees and vendors, the show will naturally attract more people says Dunlap.
“We don’t get a sense that pure gate numbers will be driving the decisions on how the NRA may change, market, or program future shows at the Farm Show Complex. They just want to keep making it the highest quality experience for those who do attend the show.”
Growing the visitor experience and making the show a destination for outdoor enthusiasts has always been the vision, said Jeremy Greene, Director of General Operations for the National Rifle Association (NRA) which began producing the show in 2014. But an important focal point also remains on the vendor experience.
“This 10-day show represents a significant investment for vendors,” said Greene. “We are always working to insure our exhibitors will continue to be happy with the audience numbers and the level of sales.”
The vendors were apparently pleased with the results of the third annual event, according to Greene. By the conclusion of this year’s show in February, 75 percent of the 1,200 vendors had already committed for the 2017 Great American Outdoor Show returning to Harrisburg, PA from February 4-12, 2017.
In 2015 the NRA extended their agreement to host the Great American Outdoor Show at the PA Farm Show Complex & Expo Center through 2018. The entire five-year deal will generate over $370 million for the region’s economy, according to the HHRVB.
The NRA created the Great American Outdoor Show in 2014 after the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show was canceled in 2013 by Reed Exhibitions who had produced that show in Harrisburg for over 30 years.
Great American Outdoor Show 2016
Results by the Numbers
Prepared by the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau. Anyone using the contents of this report must attribute the information to the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau. Contact Rick Dunlap, Public Relations Director at Rick@HersheyHarrisburg.org or 717-884-3328.
2.5% Increase in Room-Nights 2016 vs 2015 in Dauphin County
- Based on STR lodging report for “demand/room-nights sold” throughout Dauphin County during the specific 10-days of the show in 2016.
- Actual increases reported in 2016 = (Demand +2.48%); (ADR +2.68%); (RevPAR +4.80%)
- 54,490 room-nights reported in 2015 compared to 55,842 room-nights in 2016. Please note that NOT all rooms reported by STR during this time period are directly related to the show, but tourism officials use the countywide lodging report to evaluate lodging performance trends during the show dates each year.
19% Growth in Room-Nights since inaugural year for GAOS in 2014
- Based on STR lodging reports for “demand/room-nights sold” throughout Dauphin County during the specific 10-days of the show each year.
- Actual room-nights reported in 2014 = 46,873 compared to room-nights sold in 2016 = 55,842.
- Please note that NOT all rooms reported by STR during this time period are directly related to the show, but tourism officials use the countywide lodging report to evaluate lodging performance trends during the show dates each year.
68% Occupancy Rate in 2016 (6% above average for fiscal year)
- During the 10-day period of the show in 2016, STR reported 67.5% of the region’s total available lodging inventory was occupied. The region’s average Occupancy Rate for FY15-16 was 62%.
$75 Million Total Economic Impact for the Regional Economy
- The economic impact for 2016 represents a 2% increase over the $73 million impact calculated for the show in 2015 by the DMAI Event Impact Calculator.
$184,000 in City Admission & Amusement Tax Revenue (+2% from 2015)
- Projected tax revenue estimated for 2016 based on ten percent (10%) tax rate applied to total projected paid ticket sales for the GAOS in 2016.
- This estimate was generated using an estimated 2 percent (2%) increase over the previous year’s estimated tax revenue of $180,000 collected by the City of Harrisburg in 2015 from show producers.
- Note this is only an estimated projection and has not been confirmed with the City of Harrisburg or the NRA.
8,000 Jobs Supported
- This includes the employment supported by all event-related business sales including indirect (B2B supply chain purchases) and induced (incomes spent in the local economy) business sales calculated for the show in 2015 by the DMAI Event Impact Calculator.
SOURCE & DATA
SOURCE: The official source of the results in this report must be attributed to The Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB), a non-profit partnership-based Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) accredited by Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) officially serving Pennsylvania’s Dauphin and Perry counties. The organization is committed to actively marketing the region locally, domestically, and internationally to leisure and business travelers; meeting & convention planners; sporting event producers; and group tour leaders. Any questions regarding the information provided within this report should be directed to Rick Dunlap, Public Relations Director at Rick@HersheyHarrisburg.org or 717-884-3328.
DATA: Lodging research for this report was secured by HHRVB from STR, the leading global provider of competitive benchmarking, information services and research to the hotel industry. The results for Estimated Economic Impact and Jobs Supported within this report have been calculated by HHRVB using the Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) Event Impact Calculator developed for the travel & tourism industry by Tourism Economics, an Oxford Economics company.
About Great American Outdoor Show (GAOS)
The GAOS celebrates the outdoor traditions treasured by millions of Americans and their families in a 650,000-square foot exhibit space that features nearly 1,200 exhibitors, including shooting manufacturers, outfitters, boat and RV dealers, hunting and fishing retailers, and much more. www.greatamericanoutdoorshow.org
About the National Rifle Association (NRA)
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen’s group. Five million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and is the leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military. http://nra.org
About the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB)
The Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB) is the official non-profit partnership-based Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) serving Pennsylvania’s Dauphin and Perry counties. This Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) accredited organization is committed to actively marketing the region locally, domestically, and internationally to leisure and business travelers; meeting & convention planners; sporting event producers; and group tour leaders. For more information go to VisitHersheyHarrisburg.org, or call 877-727-8573.