September 13, 2016
Martinsville, VA (September 13, 2016) – Data released by the U.S. Travel Association reveals that all regions in Virginia posted an increase in tourism revenue last year. According to the U.S. Travel Association, tourism in Virginia generated $23 billion in travel spending. Tourism also supported 223,000 jobs in the Commonwealth and $1.6 billion in state and local taxes. The increase is largely attributed to Virginia’s authentic, local travel experiences, diversity of tourism product, and the efforts of the destination marketing organizations and their leadership.
Tourism was again an important contributor to the local economy in 2015. Tourism revenue for Martinsville-Henry County (MHC) reached $67,842,867, a 2.6% total increase over 2014.
Martinsville City experienced a 3% increase in revenue which makes the city the 12th fastest growing tourism economy out of 137 Virginia communities studied. Henry County experienced a 2.4% increase and ranked 39 out of 137 on the list.
Local tourism-supported jobs for MHC totaled 757 while local tourism-related taxes were $1,457,131. These figures increased by 3% and 6%, respectively.
All data was received by the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) from U.S. Travel Association and is based on domestic visitor spending (travelers from within the United States) from trips taken 50 miles or more away from home.
According to Jennifer Doss, director of tourism with the Martinsville-Henry County EDC, “Tourism revenue, jobs supported, and taxes generated have steadily increased for the past six years but this is the largest single-year jump in percentages that we’ve experienced in the past three years.” She added, “This data shows the direct impact of new tourism-related businesses, restaurants, and attractions on our community and is a good sign for the future of Martinsville-Henry County.”
"Having a strong tourism industry is vital to job creation and economic growth in Virginia," said Governor McAuliffe. "Travelers are coming to Virginia from across the country and the globe to experience our world-class restaurants, wineries, craft breweries, music festivals, oyster farms, beaches, mountains, and more. Our rich history, scenic beauty, vibrant arts, and burgeoning culinary scene make Virginia a destination like none other. It's easy to see why travelers are eager to discover why Virginia is for Lovers."
"Tourism is one of Virginia’s top five industries, and is an instant revenue generator for the Commonwealth,” said Todd Haymore, Secretary of Commerce and Trade. “With $23 billion in tourism revenues, 2015 was another record-breaking year for the Virginia tourism industry, thanks to the hard-working professionals across the state that help to showcase Virginia as a premier travel destination.”
The Virginia Tourism Corporation is the state agency responsible for marketing Virginia to visitors and promoting the Virginia is for Lovers brand. Virginia is for Lovers is the longest-running state tourism slogan in the country. Virginia is for Lovers stands for love, pure and simple, and promotes the state as the ideal destination for loved ones to completely connect on a great vacation. Virginia is for Lovers was named one of the top 10 tourism marketing campaigns of all time by Forbes and was inducted into the National Advertising Walk of Fame in 2009.
Love is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Go to www.virginia.org and start planning a trip or call 1-800-VISITVA to request a free, Virginia is for Lovers Travel Guide. Specific information for Martinsville-Henry County can be found atwww.VisitMartinsville.com or by calling 1-888-722-3498.
The Virginia Tourism Corporation receives its annual economic impact data from the U.S. Travel Association. The information is based on domestic visitor spending (travelers from within the United States) from per-person trips taken 50 miles or more away from home. Detailed economic impact data by locality is available on www.vatc.org under Research.
The mission of the Martinsville-Henry County Economic Development Corporation is to create new job opportunities and expand the tax base for the area. The organization strives to support and develop local industry, as well as market Martinsville-Henry County globally as an exceptional place to live, work and play.
The EDC is a public-private partnership between the City of Martinsville, Henry County, the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber of Commerce, the Martinsville-Henry County Chamber’s Partnership for Economic Growth (C-PEG) and the Harvest Foundation of the Piedmont.
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