PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Office of Tourism encourages South Dakotans to discover the state’s great traditions this summer. The campaign, called See South Dakota Week, also stresses the importance the visitor industry has on local economies.
“Tourism has an impact on every part of South Dakota, and every citizen makes a difference,” said Richard Benda, secretary of the Department of Tourism and State Development. “One of South Dakota’s greatest aspects is its tradition of hospitality. Visitors remember not only the great national memorials and off-the-beaten-path destinations, but also the great generosity found here among all of South Dakota’s residents.”
“See South Dakota Week” is a collaborative effort between the Office of Tourism and the Aberdeen, Brookings, Chamberlain/Oacoma, Deadwood, Huron, Mitchell, Pierre, Rapid City, Sioux Falls, Spearfish, Watertown and Yankton Chamber & Visitors Bureaus.
Tourism has a significant impact on South Dakota’s economy. Last year, visitors spent more than $941 million on everything from lodging to souvenirs, which had a $2.352 billion impact on the state’s economy.
2007 South Dakota Tourism Facts:
- Visitor spending:
- $941,057,935 compared to $864,855,345 in 2006, representing an 8.8% increase
- Distribution of visitor spending:
- 58.7% western South Dakota
- 41.3% eastern South Dakota
- Employment traceable to visitor industry: 34,621 (increase of 2.1% over 2006)
- Gas and sales tax revenue: $48.3 million
See South Dakota Week is promoted in conjunction with National Tourism Week, which was established in 1983 by the Travel Industry Association of America to promote the importance of travel and tourism as a major U.S. industry.
See South Dakota Week is part of Goal 1 of the 2010 Initiative to double visitor spending in South Dakota.