Glenwood Springs abuzz during summer
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. Glenwood Springs summer tourism appears to be continuing an upward trend.Indicators of tourism such as accommodations tax revenues and occupancy rates through July are up from 2006 figures for May and the summer. Accommodations tax revenues were also up for the entire year, increasing by about 27 percent through July compared to the same period in 2006.Were very happy about it because it contributes to our economy and its probably the No. 1 industry we have in town, said Kate Collins, vice president of tourism and marketing for the Glenwood Chamber Resort Association.She said the increase in accommodations tax revenues is very significant, especially since 2006 figures were already up 19 percent from 2005.That kind of year over year growth is pretty astonishing, she said.The Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park reported slightly stronger summer business.
Attendance was up slightly this year over last year for the whole summer, said adventure park representative Mandy Gauldin.Rock Gardens Rafting said it has had a solid season, with user days estimated from about the same as last year to maybe a 5 percent increase. Kevin Schneider, owner of Rock Gardens Rafting and a board member for the Colorado River Outfitters Association, said concerns about river flows after damage at the Shoshone Power Plant did not play out.The numbers arent final, but it was a good summer for rafting, and there was no real negative impact from the Shoshone, he said.The White River National Forest estimated that user days for commercial outfitters on the Colorado River in the area would reach 72,000 in 2007, up 14.9 percent from the 2006 CROA number.Hotel and motel occupancy rates have also been strong for the summer, Collins said. In June and July, occupancy rates were up a couple of percentage points from those months in 2006, reaching 83 percent and 89 percent respectively.Occupancy rate figures come from a Rocky Mountain Lodging Report that compiles information from hotels and motels representing 788 of an estimated 1,500 rooms in Glenwood Springs. Collins estimates that at any given time, about 200 to 500 of the citys rooms are occupied by temporary workers in industries such as construction or oil and gas.Sales tax revenues, about 30 percent of which is attributable to tourism, are also up by about 12 percent through July over last year, Collins said.Collins said a $ 10,000 regional and Front Range promotion called Springs Thaw that the chamber launched in April probably helped contribute to a bigger May for tourism.Occupancy rates had been down from the previous year, until receiving a large boost in May. Accommodations tax revenue was up 37 percent for May compared to last year. Part of the chambers marketing plan has been to increase business in the slower shoulder seasons since the summer months see high occupancy rates above 85 percent, she said.Our task is to level out the seasonalities in Glenwood Springs and bring occupancy rates to a more standard level throughout the rest of the year, she said.The Rocky Mountain Lodging Report shows that average daily room rates for the year havent increased much through July over previous years, at $ 102.55 a night. But Collins said she suspects rates have gone up more than the report shows because of both temporary workers and tourists placing increased demand on the available rooms.Rates in the face of limited supply have gone up, she said. Weve had really just a very busy, very successful summer.
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