The Yakima Convention Center saw significant growth last year. The center hosted 554 event days, a 14% increase over 2010. Attendance to events increased 17% to 149,543, breaking the attendance record of 143,800 set in 2006. Earned revenue grew 17% over 2010 and exceeded 2007, the record year for the center in revenues. In its inaugural year, the new Outdoor Plaza had 27 groups utilizing the space.
Future conventions and groups booked by VCB staff were up 2% compared to 2010, and staff generated 185 qualified group business leads, an increase of 9% from 2010. The Yakima Valley Sports Commission confirmed 365 future events for the Yakima Valley, an increase of 13% over 2010 with a projected attendance exceeding 86,800.
In consumer marketing, the VCB’s website had 211,943 unique visitors, a 28% growth in traffic over 2010 and a 76% increase over 2009. Requests for information resulting from advertising efforts increased 6.6% in 2011.
Through VCB public relations efforts, 106 media placements and articles appeared about Yakima Valley attractions and events with an advertising value exceeding $2.84 million. The Yakima Valley Visitor Information center served 14,997 visitors and responded to more than 6,600 information requests via email and phone.
More information on 2011 activities and future tourism trends will be shared during a free webinar hosted by the VCB, January 27th at 10 am. To register go to http://budurl.com/VCBwebinar .
The Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau is the official destination marketing organization for the Yakima Valley. Its mission is to stimulate economic development by marketing the Yakima Valley for conventions, groups and leisure travel.