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Business and Economy
Tourism is New Hampshire’s second-largest industry–if you combine the state’s smart manufacturing and high technology sectors (SMHT). It’s also a clear point of intersection between government and industry, with the state maintaining a number of parks, campgrounds, and historical sites, and nearby businesses in turn catering to visitors’ needs. Given this close relationship, the state provides funding to market New Hampshire to potential tourists. Some of the heaviest marketing efforts are concentrated in Boston, Philadelphia and New York City. Canadian tourists, especially Quebeçois, also make up a sizable number of New Hampshire’s visitors. From the business perspective, “tourism” is a broad term. It encompasses hotels, resorts, restaurants, retail, and arts and entertainment, among other things. So while statewide reports may indicate overall restaurant or retail sales are up or down, the story might be very different in New Hampshire’s main tourism communities. For these places, weather, gas prices, currency exchange rates, and whether they draw visitors for outdoor activities, site-seeing, or shopping could all be factors.Summary provided by StateImpact NH

Harsh Winter Was Great (For The Ski Industry)

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skinh.com
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It was a long, cold and snowy winter- that was good news for New Hampshire’s ski areas. Karl Stone, Marketing Director for Ski NH says the numbers are good for the resorts AND the state’s economy in general.

How has the 2013/2014 season stacked up?

Right now the numbers look really good… last year was our 5th best on record, and we’re tracking relatively even with that.

New Hampshire has seen a record number of visitors on the slopes, and that’s good news for resorts; but what does that mean for the state and local businesses?

Last year we conducted an economic impact study…  the numbers came in a $1.1 billion of total spending throughout the state. Only $359 million were spent directly at the ski areas. Lodging and dining… tolls, gas, taxes- all those benefits across the state during a time when there isn’t a lot of (other) tourism.

There were many years of below average snowfall; did that have a dramatic effect on the ski industry?

The snowmaking infrastructure is so strong here… it has to be with the competitive environment… but it is important to have that natural snow… we call it ‘the backyard effect’. It’s just a natural motivator.

Years ago the industry was struggling, and there was a period of consolidation with some smaller areas going out of business; has the industry turned around?

It’s an ongoing challenge for the entire industry. Different trends revitalize things… snowboarding, shaped skis, technology improving… it’s growing but at a very slow pace. Ski areas are now working together to introduce new people to the sport.

Many resorts have added zip lines, bike trails and other summer activities. Has that translated into more business overall?

(Summer) is the peak of our tourist season, so it’s a great way of getting them on the mountain and see the views we have and realize there’s something special going on in the winter months as well. 

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