Mammoth Cave Injects $62 Million into Local Economy

February 4, 2012 / Kentucky, United States, North America
Mammoth Cave visitors begin the Grand Avenue Tour

Photo by NPS

A recent study by the National Park Service credits Mammoth Cave National Park for injecting $62 million USD into the local economy.

A money generation model, developed by Michigan State University, was used to calculate the economic impact of the surrounding communities.

Basing the model off the approximately 500,000 people who visit Mammoth Cave National Park each year, the program can calculate the parks economic impact.

Results of the Model

  • 500,000 visitors spend $32 million in the park and surrounding communities each year.
  • Visitor spending supports 525 jobs.
  • These park-supported jobs generate $11 million in take-home pay for employees.
  • Take-home pay spent in area communities multiplies to an added value of $19 million.
  • This spending has a ripple effect ($32 million + $11 million + $19 million) totaling $62 million generated in south central Kentucky.

As an anchor attraction, Mammoth Cave contributes heavily to the tourism sector, the third largest industry, and the second largest employer in the state. In 2010 tourism in the cave region of Kentucky accounted for $514 million USD, supporting some 8,916 jobs.

“You can also look at this as a return on investment of federal tax dollars – the park’s $8 million budget generates approximately $8 in economic impacts for every federal tax dollar invested.” - Patrick Reed, Mammoth Cave National Park Superintendent

Mammoth Cave pumps $62 million/year into local economy [Mammoth Cave National Park]

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