As we get into the heart of Summer Tourism Season with festivals and other events, the Hospitality and Tourism Industry continues its comeback from the Pandemic. The economic numbers are being closely watched.
In Centre County, plenty to see and do to attract tourism business. There’s more outdoor recreation opportunities, such as the development of the Harvest Fields Community Trails near Boalsburg. In recent weeks, we’ve told you about the focus on renovating historical properties, such as the Rowland Theatre in Philipsburg, and the Iron Works at Curtin Village as another element in bringing in visitors. Now, the Summer’s big festivals and other events are on tap.
One Pandemic related impact that remains as a controlling factor is staffing. The Hospitality Industry hit hard in recent years. In Centre County, there’s been a rebound, just over 6,000 Employees now listed in Hospitality related jobs.
However, there’s still other pandemic related factors. Fritz Smith, the President and CEO of the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau saying: “For Event Planners now one challenge is still attempting to do the in person event and also on Zoom or some type of broadcast channel.” One positive sign for Centre County — the hotel room occupancy rate. Last December County-wide was about 32%. By this past April, it was up above 60%.