Travelers to Racine County spent $250 million in 2018, an increase of 5.7% from 2017, according to research conducted by Tourism Economics. The new report shows that tourism supported 4,030 local jobs contributing $115 million in total income. Those jobs generated $28 million in state and local taxes last year.

Established in 1983, Real Racine (formerly known as the Racine County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau) is the accredited 501c-6 non-profit destination marketing organization that oversees tourism promotion and development in Racine County.

Real Racine operates the Visitor’s Center (located just west of the I-94/Highway 20 interchange) and promotes to five distinct markets: leisure, meetings/conventions, group tours, sports and international. It produces and promotes special events that attract thousands each year. These include EVP Beach Volleyball, The Wisconsin Senior Olympics qualifiers, Midwest Pro Watercross Tour, and the United
States Australian Rules Football League events. Among the contributing factors for local tourism growth was hosting events such as the United States Australian Rules Football League National Tournament, which generated more than 1200 overnight stays and an economic impact of $1.4 million with a return on investment of 48 to 1.

“Tourism plays a critical role in our community and continues to grow, and from an economic standpoint, the numbers reflect that,” said Dave Blank, President and CEO Real Racine. “Last year’s numbers are very encouraging, and we hope to capitalize on this momentum in the coming summer season.”

Statewide, visitor spending increased by 4.86% to 13.3 billion in 2018 The findings are a part of a study conducted by Tourism Economics highlighting continued growth across the state’s tourism industry. Last year, tourism supported over 199,000 jobs and visitor trips topped 112 million visits. The announcement comes as Wisconsin’s tourism industry celebrates this year’s National Travel &Tourism Week (May 5- 11).

Wisconsin traveler spending generated $1.5 billion in state and local revenue and $1.2 billion in federal taxes. and visitors generated $1.6 billion in state and local revenue and $1.2 billion in federal taxes, saving Wisconsin taxpayers $680 per household. Last year, tourism achieved a Return on Investment of 7 to 1: $7 in tax revenue per $1 promotional spend. Additional economic impact findings, including
individual county figures are also available at industry.travelwisconsin.com/research/economic-impact.

“Tourism in Wisconsin continues to see steady economic growth thanks to all the individuals who work hard to advance the industry,” said Tourism Secretary-designee Meaney. “We also see tremendous growth opportunities that will help us tell the story of Wisconsin and attract new travelers to explore some of our most unique offerings.”

To learn more about Racine County Tourism, visit realracine.com.


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