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Economic Contributions of the St. Augustine Amphitheater in St. John’s County, Florida (2012-2013)
The historic city of St. Augustine in St. Johns County, Florida, is a major tourism attraction in the southeast United States, which generates significant local spending and economic impacts. The St. Augustine Amphitheater, established in 1965, is a 4000-seat publicly owned venue that offers a variety of entertainment and community/cultural events during March through December each year, including 25-30 large concerts annually with nationally known musicians, and a weekly farmers market. The facility has an annual operating budget of about $5 million. The number of events and attendance has increased since a major ($9M) renovation of the amphitheater was completed in 2007. Approximately 150-200 temporary employees and vendors are employed for major events, and the facility also has a large number of volunteers who assist with events. Current information on numbers and types of visitors and their economic contributions is needed for local policy-makers and facility managers in order to make informed decisions in support of resource management and economic development. Some particular issues to be addressed include the types of visitors patronizing the amphitheater, willingness to pay for events, and what features of the facility are most attractive to visitors. This project is funded by the St. Augustine Amphitheater and led by Dr. Alan Hodges (Food and Resource Economics) with Dr. Svetlana Stepchenkova, Dr. Lori Pennington-Gray and Dr. Michael Scicchitano (Florida Survey Research Center/Political Science).
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