National Parks create $447M in benefits for Mississippi

Published 12:20 am Sunday, April 23, 2017

TUPELO — A new National Park Service report shows that 11,375,658 visitors to Mississippi’s National Park Service units in 2016 spent $390 million in local communities. That spending supported 5,580 jobs in the state and had a cumulative benefit to the local economies of $447 million.

“The National Park Service sites within Mississippi include Natchez National Historical Park, Vicksburg National Military Park, Brices Cross Roads National Battlefield Site, Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail, Tupelo National Battlefield and part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore,” Parkway Superintendent Mary Risser said. “We attract visitors from across the U.S. and around the world who come here to experience the state’s parks and then spend time and money enjoying the services provided by our neighboring communities.”

“The National Park Service is proud to have been entrusted with the care of America’s most treasured places and delighted that the visitors we welcome generate significant contributions to the local, state and national economies,” Natchez National Historical Park Superintendent Kathleen Bond said.

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According to the 2016 report, most park visitor spending was for lodging (31.2 percent) followed by food and beverages (27.2 percent), gas and oil (11.7 percent), admissions and fees (10.2 percent) and souvenirs and other expenses (9.7 percent), local transportation (7.4 percent) and camping fees (2.5 percent).