5.5 million visitors spend $800 million to play on the Cape

Playing is not good for body and mind. This is good for the economy – especially on Cape Cod. Everything from beach-going to water-skiing, boating to fishing contributed billions to the state's economy by 2022.

The US Bureau of Economic Analysis Economic impact is indexed Outdoor recreation in Massachusetts is $11.7 billion. Those numbers put boating, fishing and cycling at the top of the list in economic value.

This helps the Cape and Islands to be the state's premier holiday destinations. An estimated 5.5 million people visit the Cape annually Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce.

They cover almost 700 miles of coastline, sandy beaches and 45,000 acres. Cape Cod National Seashore. They sail the Nantucket and Vineyard sounds and the waters of Cape Cod Bay. They take whale watches and fishing charters. They paddle the estuaries that adorn the peninsula in kayaks and paddle boards

That audience spends a lot of money to play. The Chamber estimates that it spends an average of $200 per day per traveling party, or $800 per traveling party for an overnight stay. That money pays for the games, but also the incidental costs associated with them.

Raja Boating for all outdoor activities. In Massachusetts District 9 (Southeastern Massachusetts, Cape and Islands) the recreational boating industry alone adds nearly $789 million in economic impact. National Marine Manufacturers Association.

Randall Lyons, Managing Director Massachusetts Marine Trade AssociationThe impact is even greater when you consider that the recreational boating industry employs 17,500 people and that boaters spend money on shopping, restaurants, lodging, fuel and other items, he said. He puts the economic impact of the recreational boating industry on the Massachusetts economy at $5 billion.

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Lyons said that for every $1 spent on the temporary dock, it equals $4 to the local community where the visiting ferry docks. The industry saw a boom in sales when COVID-19 hit.

„People took to the water,” Lyons said. “Boat sales were very strong. Inventory was difficult to find.

According to the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, the Cape sees 5.5 million tourists annually, 65% of whom arrive in the summer. But it's also time for 228,000 Barnstable residents to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends.

Philip Chinn, Owner Cape Cod Rail Trail Bike and Kayak In Brewster, he is banking on double-digit growth in his business. He calls the Cape a great tourism product and the railway an undiscovered gem. While it attracts 400,000 cyclists, walkers, runners, skaters and horseback riders annually, Chin thinks the trail's draw is underdeveloped.

„Compared to the number of visitors that visit the Cape annually, this is a very low penetration,” he said.

His shop is in the middle of it Cape Cod Railway, close to Kettle Pools and access to Cape Cod National Seashore. The trail offers people a unique experience and a way to explore the Cape, he said.

„We're seeing big improvements for biking on the Cape,” he said.

With the rise in popularity of electronic bikes, Chin believes that recreational biking is in transition. Bikes ($25/hour or $500/week event) open up the market to those who enjoy cycling but may need help to power themselves.

Regional data is hard to come by, however Paul Janij, director of the state's recently launched Office of Outdoor RecreationHe said the state is ready to promote outdoor recreation in new and sustainable ways, including a focus on inclusion and accessibility.

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„We're trying to get more people to come to Massachusetts and recreate in the outdoors,” he said. „We're trying to get more residents to recognize all the great outdoor recreation opportunities here.”

Started by Govt An inclusive and accessible outdoor recreation events program On Dec. 15, $100,000 will be awarded to organizations promoting Massachusetts as a destination for outdoor play. The money will support outdoor accessibility events, Jahnike said.

Plans are in the works for an outdoor recreation business alliance Massachusetts Office of Tourism and Travel As well as regional tourism councils, Jahnige said.

Denise Coffey writes about tourism, business and a variety of issues affecting Cape residents. Contact her at [email protected].

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