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Tourism has become an important economic sector in many parts of the world, and many regions, states, and local areas are increasingly looking to expenditures by visitors as a potential source of economic growth. Some communities have developed facilities to host sports events or other forms of entertainment to attract out-of-town visitors. Thus, the multi-purpose sports arena/auditorium has joined the industrial park as a community economic development initiative. This paper estimates the economic contribution of a multi-purpose sports and auditorium facility located in Fargo, North Dakota. Since opening its doors in December of 1992, the FARGODOME has hosted a wide variety of sporting events (e.g., college and high school football, rodeo, professional basketball), concerts, trade shows, and other forms of entertainment (e.g., ice shows, circuses, motor sports events). The purpose of this study was to estimate the contribution that FARGODOME event attendees and participants make to the Fargo area economy. The assessment process included (1) determining the residency and expenditure patterns of event attendees and participants, (2) estimating the aggregate direct economic contribution to the area economy by combining event attendee attributes and expenditures with FARGODOME records of the number of events held at the facility and attendance at each, and (3) estimating the secondary economic impacts associated with the FARGODOME's direct economic contribution. Event attendees' and participants' (e.g., exhibitors, athletes, and accompanying persons) place of residence and expenditures were obtained through intercept surveys of attendees/participants at selected FARGODOME events. The expenditures made directly by the FARGODOME to local entities (i.e., for payroll, benefits, utilities, etc.) were added to the attendees'/participants' expenditures outside the facility to arrive at the total direct economic impact (contribution) to the Fargo area. Then, the North Dakota Input-Output Model was used to estimate the secondary (multiplier) effects resulting from FARGODOME activities. Economic impacts will be reported using indicators such as gross business volume (gross receipts) of various economic sectors (e.g., retail trade), personal income, and employment.


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