Tourism numbers down in South Dakota

Published: Jul. 3, 2019 at 6:36 PM CDT
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Tourism numbers in South Dakota are down so far this year.

It's not just our affecting our national parks, its being felt in Sioux Falls as well, in places like falls park.

With Fourth of July on the horizon there is hope that the trend will be reversed.

This slow start to the tourism season is due in part due to a devastating spring across most of the mid-west and a unstable agriculture economy.

"Were hopeful though, the Fourth of July weekend we really see it start to go up, so this is the weekend... we're keeping our fingers crossed," Teri Schmidt of the Sioux Falls Convention and Visitors Bureau said.

Tourism is one of the keys driving the state's economy.

"It's one of our largest industry's, when you think about employing almost 55,000 South Dakotan's, generating nearly $300,000,000 in state and local tax revenue. 11% of state sales tax revenue comes from tourism," South Dakota Department of Tourism Secretary, James Hagan said.

Hagan says this isn't the first time the state has dealt with a problem like this.

About five years ago flooding across the region caused a dip in visitor numbers, but a strong summer and fall made up for the slow start.

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