Community Tourism Development: An Opportunity for Park and Recreation Departments

By Weaver, Glenn; Wishard-Lambert, Virginia | Parks & Recreation, September 1996 | Go to article overview

Community Tourism Development: An Opportunity for Park and Recreation Departments


Weaver, Glenn, Wishard-Lambert, Virginia, Parks & Recreation


Economic conditions have prompted downsizing in corporations, private businesses and community services in many aspects of our society. To stay within the city budgets, many traditional services are being reduced or eliminated. Even those services that remain in place are forced to defend or justify their existence and often to become self supporting. Park and recreation personnel nationwide are threatened by decreasing funds and usually complain that their budget is one of the first to be cut

As community leaders struggle to bolster their local economies they are searching for economic and employment alternatives. Thousands of communities, and increasingly, park and recreation departments have begun to look at the potential of tourism as an economic development strategy and financial support base for their programs.

Community leaders usually recognize the responsibility and impact park and recreation departments have on the quality of life of their citizens. However, they may not recognize the economic potential of park and recreation departments in attracting industry, retirees and new business.

Many park and recreation departments are beginning to position themselves as a major component of the community economic development team. They can and should document the economic impact of their sport tournaments and special events, organized in the past as an integral part of an overall recreation program. Today, park and recreation departments need to recognize that regional and national sports tournaments are much more than necessary recreation programming.

These events bring visitors to communities and support the community's overall economic stability. In 1995, the Blue Springs (MO) Park and Recreation Department conducted research to measure the direct economic impact of a baseball tournament with teams from five states. They found that the tournament generated $244,366 in direct expenditures. These expenditures are obviously an economic boost for the area, but they also position the park and recreation department as an economic development asset and may go a long way in sustaining or increasing the department's budget.

Tourism projects, such as special events or sports tournaments, often begin with a goal of raising money for a special project. Examples include a town that held a fund raising festival to rebuild a fire-damaged historic building, or towns that have held festivals to show their heritage. Other goals may be educational, cultural, to honor a past event or person, or to promote community. As development progresses, specific objectives are refined and tourism begins to be seen as an economic development strategy that will potentially benefit all of the initial goals.

In addition to sports tournaments, many park and recreation departments sponsor bus trips for senior citizens, holiday celebrations and special events. Any of these projects could be expanded to attract visitors. Because park and recreation departments are skilled in recreation programming and have leadership teams and volunteers already in place, participating in a community tourism effort would be easy.

Although community tourism development embraces the idea that in addition to private enterprise development, the community can do some things to enhance its economy through tourism. A sustainable effort, however, requires organization, leadership, products and services, and marketing.

Organization

One of the most essential elements of tourism development is a formal organization. If development is anything other than an individual business effort, the organization must be representative of the community it will serve. Its structure is often informal as development efforts begin, but becomes more formal as the industry expands. There are numerous success stories associated with organizations such as chambers of commerce, convention and visitor bureaus and tourism associations (both local and regional). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Community Tourism Development: An Opportunity for Park and Recreation Departments
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.