Tourist Season Goes Year Round in Kentucky : Official Travel Source

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Tourist Season Goes Year Round in Kentucky

Beyond its ‘bourbonism’ boom, $14.5 billion hospitality sector grows by giving visitors a taste of the authentic

Courtesy of The Lane Report By Susan Gosselin

Continuing an especially good run in recent years, vibrant Kentucky tourism grew another 5 percent in 2016, the strongest expansion rate since 2005, according to Kentucky’s Tourism Arts and Heritage Cabinet. The economic impact hit $14.5 billion last year, when all nine of the state tourism regions experienced increases.

Rising global taste for and interest in bourbon has certainly helped spike the numbers. It’s driving a revival down old West Main Street in downtown Louisville as well as hotel construction there and elsewhere in the state.

Long mostly a seasonal industry busy in spring and summer, tourism-sector members are developing it into a year-round enterprise in Kentucky that generates $1.5 billion in tax revenue and supports 193,000 jobs – an important number that grew by 7,000 in the 2016 measure.

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