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Report: National Parks Good for Colorado Economy, Jobs

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A new report from the National Park Service shows that visitors spent more than $306 million in and around Colorado’s national parks in 2010.

The report shows spending in Colorado’s national parks and gateway communities supported more than 4,500 jobs statewide, mostly related to lodging, food and drink, and shopping.

“This really quantifies what great economic engines national park units are to local, state, and the national economy,” says James Doyle, Chief of Communications and Legislation for the National Park Service Intermountain Region. “I think we’ve always assumed they were great economic engines, but this report really illustrates how strongly they really do contribute to these economies.”

Nationally, spending by park visitors contributed $31 billion to the economy and supported more than a quarter of a million jobs – an increase of 11,500 jobs over the year before. 

There are 12 national parks in Colorado, including Rocky Mountain National Park.

As host of KUNC's Colorado Edition, I work closely with our producers and reporters to bring context and diverse perspectives to the important issues of the day. And because life is best when it's a balance of work and play, I love finding stories that highlight culture, music, the outdoors, and anything that makes Colorado such a great place to live.
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