January tourism impact expected to be $2.8 million

Augusta tourism officials expect $2.8 million in visitor spending in January.

Tourism will beat activity from a year ago by about $500,000, according to information provided by the Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Augusta Sports Council.

Direct visitor spending is based on the number of occupied overnight hotel rooms by guests in town for meetings, reunions and other events.

For January, the big driver of visitor cash will be the Augusta Cutting Horse Futurity from Jan. 18-25. The attendance is estimated at 2,700 with an impact of $1.2 million. The South Carolina Methodist State Basketball Tournament will bring in 1,500 people with a $303,000 impact.

In January 2013, the estimated visitor spending was $2.4 million, much higher than the $664,000 reported in January 2011.

For 2013, the estimated impact was $31.3 million. The agencies, however, do not include an estimate of the visitor impact from the Masters Tournament in April.

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