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Baltimores New Years Eve Spectacular is a free, family-friendly

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Baltimores New Years Eve Spectacular is a free, family-friendly ...

    Audience Research

    and Economic Impact Study of

    Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular

    2010

    Prepared by

    Forward Analytics, Inc.

    3234 Eastmont Avenue

    Pittsburgh, PA 15216

    www.forwardanalytics.com

Highlights of the Study

Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular is a tremendous asset that enriches the City‟s

    quality of life and attracts visitors from all over the state of Maryland and throughout the

    country. Perhaps there is no better place to watch the region‟s longest and largest New

    Year‟s Eve fireworks display than over the waterfront of historic Inner Harbor. The

    celebration triggered a positive economic impact for the City as an estimated 50,000

    visitors rang in the New Year at Inner Harbor and its surrounding neighborhoods.

    ? Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve 2010 attracted an estimated 40,000 visitors from

    outside of the City of Baltimore. Approximately, 14,000 visitors traveled from

    outside of the State of Maryland.

? New Year‟s Eve 2010 had a total economic impact on the City of Baltimore

    business volume of $6.9 million, comprising $1.9 million in direct impact and a

    further $5 million in indirect impact. Direct spending by visitors generated $93,219

    in sales tax revenues for the State of Maryland.

? Overnight guests spent an estimated $226,670 at local hotels. Hotel expenditures

    generated an estimated $17,000 in tax revenues that goes directly to the City of

    Baltimore, and $11,333 for the State of Maryland.

? 73.2% of survey respondents indicated „fireworks at midnight‟ are the primary

    reason for visiting Inner Harbor/downtown for New Year‟s Eve 2010. „Dinner at a

    local restaurant‟ (45.8%) and „enjoying the atmosphere or socializing‟ (30.7%) are

    also top reasons for visiting Inner Harbor/downtown on the Eve.

? Survey respondents were asked to rate the importance (on a four-point scale) of

    fireworks, free staged entertainment, variety of restaurants/ food, and available

    lodging. An overwhelming 92.2% of survey respondents indicate the fireworks

    display to be very important or important. Free stage entertainment is very

    important or important to 59.5% of visitors.

? 100% of interviewed restaurants and hotels strongly agree that Baltimore‟s New

    Year‟s Eve Spectacular brings the City alive, creating an unparalleled

    atmosphere and experience for Baltimore residents and visitors alike.

? 100% of interviewed restaurants and hotels strongly agree or agree that

    Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular fireworks display brings people to the

    Inner Harbor/downtown area and creates a significant economic impact for

    downtown businesses.

? Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular proves to be a family-friendly event as

    61.4% of visitors came with the family, and another 17.1% came with both family

    and friends. Twenty-one percent of visitors came with friends.

? Forty percent all survey respondents earned an undergraduate degree, while

    another 26.2% earned a post-graduate degree. Accordingly, 44% percent of

    respondents indicate their household income to be $75,000 and above.

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Introduction

At the heart of Baltimore lies the Inner Harbor. It provides the lifeblood of Baltimore‟s th century, financial structure and the rhythm of its cultural identity. Starting with the 18Baltimore‟s harbor has been one of the Nation‟s major seaports and hence, commerce

    centers.

In the 1970‟s, a distinctive arts and cultural identity began to flourish around the harbor.

    Today, the Inner Harbor is a primary tourist destination. Nestled close to the water and

    downtown, the Inner Harbor and ring of surrounding neighborhoods offer tremendous

    diversity and the best of Baltimore‟s hotel, restaurant, and nightlife attractions.

An estimated 50,000 visitors came to Inner Harbor/downtown to ring in 2010. Baltimore

    Office of Promotion & The Arts hosts the New Year‟s Eve Spectacular. This is a family-

    friendly event that with live music starting at 7pm on the Eve. Despite the rain and colder

    temperatures, at midnight visitors enjoyed the region‟s largest and longest fireworks display set over Inner Harbor.

Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular is a free community celebration and gift to the

    people of Baltimore and the thousands of visitors who gather here for the New Year. The

    event‟s title sponsor, Ports America, realizes that their support is an investment in the local

    economy as restaurants, hotels, and entertainment venues reap the financial benefits.

    The fireworks display over Baltimore‟s Inner Harbor brings the city alive, creating an

    atmosphere and experience for that is simply priceless.

Purpose of Study and Methodology

Forward Analytics, Inc. was hired by Baltimore Office of Promotion and The Arts to

    conduct audience research and an economic impact study for Baltimore‟s New Year‟s

    Eve Spectacular. The primary goal of the research is to measure the economic impact

    of the New Year‟s Eve Spectacular on the City of Baltimore, specifically its restaurants,

    hotels, and retailers. Such information is crucial to analyze the return on investment (ROI)

    for all constituents including; sponsors, local government, and the business community.

The study utilizes a customized survey to collect data from a random sample of visitors to

    the Inner Harbor on New Year‟s Eve. Prior to the event, Forward Analytics collaborated with event planners to create a 2-page questionnaire. In-person interviews were

    administered by Forward Analytics staff to 153 adult attendees (age 18+). The sample

    size represents a statistical significance of +/-8% margin at the 95% confidence interval.

    This means that the results reflect the answers between 90% and 100% of the total

    population. The confidence level is considered significant for making sound business

    decisions.

In addition to the economic impact, the audience survey was designed to measure

    sponsorship awareness, demographics, and to what degree the sponsored fireworks

    display factor in drawing visitors to spend New Year‟s Eve at Inner Harbor or surrounding

    neighborhoods.

The research also incorporates guided interviews with 10 hotels and 10 restaurants

    located in the Inner Harbor and surrounding neighborhoods. Similar to the audience

    survey, the goal of the merchant interviews is to gauge the impact of the New Year‟s Eve Spectacular and fireworks display on the volume of business and the dollars spent by

    customers.

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“Visit Characteristics” and Demographics

    As mentioned, an estimated 50,000 people celebrated New Year‟s Eve 2010 at Inner Harbor and surrounding neighborhoods. Visitors came from all corners of Maryland and

    from across the country. Audience research demonstrates that 80% of New Year‟s Eve visitors to Inner Harbor/downtown traveled from outside of downtown Baltimore to join

    the festivities.

    Residence of NYE Spectacular Visitors

    Downtown Baltimore20.0%

    Baltimore Metropolitan Area, 31.3%

    not including downtown

    In Maryland, but outside Baltimore 20.7%Metropolitan Area

    out-of-state28.0%

    For 19% of survey respondents, New Year‟s Eve was the first time in the past year that they visited Inner Harbor/downtown. Forty percent of survey respondents visited 2 or 3

    previous times, while another 40% visited four or more times in the past year.

    How many times in the past yeardid you

    visit Baltimores Inner Harbor/downtown?

    1 time- 6+ times tonight 26.1%19.0%

    4 - 5 times

    14.4%

    2 - 3 times

    40.5%

    Why do people visit Inner Harbor for New Year’s Eve and how long to they stay? With so many restaurants, bars and entertainment venues in the area, it‟s no wonder the crowd chose to ring in the New Year at this locale. Yet, when asked the primary reason for

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visiting Inner Harbor/downtown for New Year‟s Eve, 73.2% of survey respondents

    indicated „fireworks at midnight‟. „Dinner at a local restaurant (45.8%) and enjoying

    the atmosphere or socializing (30.7%) are also top reasons for visiting Inner

    Harbor/downtown on the Eve.

    What is the primary reason(s) for visiting Inner Harbor/downtown on New Years Eve?

    fireworks at midnight73.2%

    dinner at local45.8%restaurant

    atmosphere/socializing30.7%

    free entertainment28.8%

    family-friendly activities21.6%

    bar-hopping20.9%

    overnight lodging9.0%

    0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%

    Respondents were asked to chose up to three responses.

The smorgasbord of entertainment options in Inner Harbor and surrounding

    neighborhoods enticed visitors to remain in the area throughout the entire span of the

    evening‟s planned festivities. Over half of survey respondents (55.6%) spent 5 or more

    hours in Inner Harbor and the surrounding neighborhoods, likely spending money and

    stimulating the economy.

    How many hours do you plan to spend in Inner Harbor

    and the surrounding neighborhoods tonight?

    1 - 2 hrs 6.5%

    7+ hrs 30.1%

    3 - 4 hrs 37.9%

    5 - 6 hrs 25.5%

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Visitor party size ranges from just one visitor to groups of 10+. The average party size is 3.6.

    The mode for attendee party size, or the more frequently encountered party size, is two

    persons. Pairs rank the highest proportionally (38.8%), followed by groups of four people

    (23.7%).

Sixty-six percent of attendees celebrated New Year‟s Eve 2010 with their spouses/partners,

    while 24.8% celebrated with children. Another 31.4% of survey respondents rang in the

    New Year with friends.

    Who did you spend New Years Eve with?

    spouse/ partner66.0%

    friends/ neighbors31.4%

    your children24.8%

    parents8.5%

    no one7.2%

    social group2.0%

    0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%90%100%

    Respondents were asked to check all that apply.

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Another survey question was designed to gauge the value of various entertainment

    options when deciding to visit Inner Harbor/downtown for New Year‟s Eve. Survey

    respondents were asked to rate the importance (on a four-point scale) of fireworks, free

    staged entertainment, variety of restaurants/ food, and available lodging. An

    overwhelming 92.2% of survey respondents indicate the fireworks display to be very important or important.

    When deciding to visit the Inner Harbor/downtown for New Years Eve,

    how important are the following?

    Fireworks Display

    80.4%80%70%60%50%40%30%11.8%20%7.2%0.7%10%0%very importantimportantsomewhatnot importantimportant

    Free Stage Entertainment

    80%70%60%50%40.5%40%28.1%31.4%30%20%10%0.0%0%very importantimportantsomewhatnot importantimportant

    Variety of Restaurants/ Food

    80%70%60%51.6%50%40%29.4%30%18.3%20%10%0.3%0%very importantimportantsomewhatnot importantimportant

    Available Lodging

    80%70%60%50%40.5%40%26.8%22.2%30%10.5%20%10%0%very importantimportantsomewhatnot importantimportant

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Perhaps the most revealing data regarding the importance of fireworks comes from the

    following questions. Survey respondents were asked, “How likely would you have visited Inner Harbor/downtown for New Year‟s Eve if there were no fireworks display?” Sixty-

    eight percent indicated not likely or not likely at all. That‟s an estimated 34,000 visitors

    who would have spent their money elsewhere. Furthermore, 31.4% of survey respondents

    were not likely or not likely at all to visit Inner Harbor/ downtown for New Year‟s Eve if

    there was no music or stage entertainment. Clearly, Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular and fireworks display attracts people to the Inner Harbor/downtown area

    creating a significant economic impact for the local businesses.

Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular proves to be a worthwhile investment and will

    continue to generate economic impact for the City of Baltimore, specifically Inner

    Harbor and the surrounding neighborhoods, for years to come. Seventy-five percent of

    survey respondents are very likely or likely to visit Inner Harbor/downtown for New Year‟s

    Eve in the next three years.

    How likely are you to visit Inner Harbor/downtown

    for New Years Eve in the next three years?

    Not likely at allNot likely2.4%4.8%

    Somewhat

    likely

    17.9%Very likely

    41.8%

    Likely

    33.1%

New Year‟s Eve is truly a “big tent” event in the sense that it is almost universally

    celebrated no matter what age, gender, race, religion, music or sports affiliation.

    The following data aims to provide quantifiable demographic information that can help

    form, support, or benchmark the direction of the event.

Visitor Demographics

    Age

    ? 4.6% are 18-24 year olds

    ? 25.5% are 25-34 year olds

    ? 48.4% are 35-49 year olds

    ? 19.0% are 50-64 year olds

    ? 2.6% are 65+ year olds

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Gender

    ? 53.6% male

    ? 46.4% female

Marital Status

    ? 17.0% single

    ? 58.2% married

    ? 20.9% partnered

    ? 3.9% separated/ divorced

    ? 51.6% live with dependent children

Education

    ? 6.5% high school graduates

    ? 26.8% some college/technical or vocations school

    ? 40.5% four-year college

    ? 26.2% post graduate degree

Income

    ? 2.7% - less than $25,000

    ? 20.0% - $25,000 to $49,999

    ? 33.3% - $50,000 to $74,999

    ? 27.3% - $75,000 to $99,999

    ? 12.0% - $100,000 to $124,999

    ? 4.7% - $125,000+

Ethnic or Cultural Background

    ? 15.0% African American/ Black

    ? 5.9% Asian

    ? 75.2% Caucasian/ White

    ? 3.9% Hispanic

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Economic Impact of Inner Harbor/Downtown Visitors

The need for information about the economic impact and financial benefits of special

    events and festivals on communities and cities is imperative. Whether public or private

    stewards, event managers face the challenge of communicating how an event will

    generate enough financial gain to offset the money and effort required to produce it.

    By clearly illustrating the economic impact produced by a social or cultural event, a link

    can then be drawn to its role in the overall economic vitality of the community.

This section explains the direct and indirect business volume and government revenues

    generated by visitors to Inner Harbor/downtown on New Year‟s Eve. While we can not

    assume that all dollars spent in the area are attributable to Baltimore‟s New Year‟s Eve Spectacular, research demonstrates that the fireworks extravaganza plays a significant

    role in drawing people to Inner Harbor/downtown. To reiterate these statistical findings,

    68% of survey respondents indicated that they were not likely or not likely at all to visit

    Inner Harbor/downtown if there were no fireworks on New Year‟s Eve. And 73.2% of respondents revealed that fireworks were their primary reason for celebrating at Inner

    Harbor/downtown.

Economic impact generally measures new money brought into the economy by out-of-

    area visitors. Spending by local residents, those residing in downtown Baltimore are not

    included. Local spending merely represents a redistribution of existing money in the

    community and as such is not considered new money.

    With 50,000 people visiting Inner Harbor/downtown, market research determined that

    20% of attendees reside in downtown Baltimore. And 40,000 people came from outside

    of area bringing fresh dollars into the local economy.

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