17 Oct Trekonderoga’s economic impact grows with 2016 event
The second annual Star Trek and pop culture convention – “Trekonderoga” – was held in Ticonderoga, New York on Aug. 12 to 14 this year. The Trekonderoga conventions are a partnership between James Cawley, the Ticonderoga Revitalization Alliance, and the scores of volunteers who helped create the studio sets over many years, and to staff the conventions.
Events were held at various locations in Ticonderoga, including the Star Trek Original Series Set Tour on Montcalm Street, the North Country Community College, the Elks Club, the High School, the Rathbun Building, and Bicentennial Park. Big hits again this year included tours of the meticulously re-created sets from the original Star Trek TV series, pictures and autographs with stars, and special program and presentations related to Star Trek. New events this year included free fireworks in the park, a costume contest, and an Elvis concert in the High School auditorium featuring Ticonderoga’s James Cawley (with part of the proceeds from the concert going to the Kiwanis Back Pack program providing nutritious food for qualifying school students).
Paid attendance at the 2016 convention doubled from last year to over 600 persons, with an additional over 60 volunteer staff helping with the convention. The Regional Office for Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) has now calculated the direct economic benefits to the Ticonderoga area from Trekonderoga. This analysis is based in particular on survey data from those who purchased their tickets online (the majority of ticket holders). It includes the estimated expenditures on food, lodging, etc. made by the attendees and staff, as well as the local purchases made by the convention organizers. ROOST’s calculations are that the direct economic expenditures totaled approximately $155,000. This is more than double the amount ROOST calculated for the first Trekonderoga convention in 2015.
In addition, the convention generated substantial “ripple effects” through indirect economic impacts, such as purchases of additional supplies by local businesses, and other local spending. Using the multiplier generated by similar events in the area, these indirect impacts were an estimated $192,000. This gives an estimated total direct and indirect economic benefit to the area from Trekonderoga – 2016 of approximately $347,000. Combined with the direct and indirect economic benefits from the Trekonderoga convention last year, the two Trekonderoga conventions together have brought an estimated over one half million dollars in economic benefits to the Ticonderoga area in the year from September 2015 through August 2016.
The convention also boosted area tourism by drawing in new visitors, with over 40% of the survey respondents saying that this was their first visit to Ticonderoga. Trekonderoga – 2016 also received major media attention, including from CNN, the New York Times, and the Associated Press, boosting Ticonderoga’s profile and its image as a unique tourist destination.
The organizers would like to thank those in Ticonderoga who supported the convention, including the Town government (including the Highway Department and Police Department), the Fire Department, North Country Community College, the Elks, the Central School District office, St. Mary’s School, Sun Community News, the local businesses who provided special discounts during the convention, and all those who welcomed the numerous visitors to Ticonderoga.
Live long and prosper! (Vulcan greeting from Star Trek)