Monday, May 13, 2024

Fishing Tournaments Land Economic Boost For The Lake Champlain Region

fisherman on a boat

Ticonderoga, NY – The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST), in coordination with the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC), has released the results of the 2023 Lake Champlain Region bass tournament survey, developed to assess the economic impact of the region’s fishing tournaments.

Overall economic impact of the fishing tournaments in 2023 was substantial. Visitors contributed positively to the local economy, with an estimated total spend in Essex County amounting to more than $2 million. The Ticonderoga area and Lake Champlain Region typically host 30-40 tournaments between May and October each year, depending on each tournament’s rotation of contracted locations, with many of these tournaments attracting hundreds of participants.

Ticonderoga Chamber of Commerce President Matt Courtright explained the significant increase in the number of tournaments over the past decade, with three times as many fishing tournaments as there were 10 years ago. “Ten or 12 years ago, the region hosted 12-14 tournaments each year,” he said. “The Lake Champlain Region, including Ticonderoga, has seen significant tournament growth over the years, with many tournaments returning on a rotating location basis.”

Tournaments drew more than 1,700 anglers to the region in 2023. Subsequent survey results revealed insightful details about participant demographics and spending habits. Of the 201 anglers who participated in the survey, 97% were male, confirming the sport’s popularity among men.

Tournaments lured anglers from across the US, with the majority from New York (34%) and its neighboring states including Massachusetts (28%) and New Hampshire (12%), with significant representation from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. A notable 58% of participants had participated in fishing tournaments in the Ticonderoga area or Lake Champlain Region at least 11 times, underscoring the region’s continued allure and appeal of its fishing events.

Despite their primary focus on fishing, participants also actively engaged in local tourism, with 90% visiting nearby restaurants and over 70% patronizing local shops, gas stations and convenience stores.

fisherman fishing on a boat

Photo Credit: ROOST

The survey also sheds light on participants’ lodging choices and average length of stay, enriching the understanding of their experiences beyond dining and shopping activities. Two-thirds of respondents chose to stay in Ticonderoga during their stay, with the majority preferring motels or hotels; others favored private rentals, RVs, cabins, second homes or staying with family and friends.

According to ROOST Lake Champlain Region Marketing Manager Isabelle Bureau, these surveys allow ROOST to better understand visitors’ time spent in the region, while assessing the impact of their visit. “These fishing tournaments not only showcase the natural beauty of our region but also provide a significant economic boost to our local businesses, hotels and restaurants,” remarked Bureau. “We are thrilled to see such enthusiastic participation and look forward to hosting many more successful tournaments.”

Courtright went on to explain that tournament growth took place between the Adirondack region’s “shoulder seasons” – the times of year that experience fewer visitors. “This growth has not only had an overall significant economic impact, but has encouraged visitation during spring and fall,” he said. “The success of these fishing tournaments is due to community support, business enthusiasm and our local lodging properties supporting the invaluable role played by outdoor recreation in driving the area’s economic growth and fostering community vitality. The Town of Ticonderoga and the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism have also been incredibly supportive of the event.”

All survey respondents expressed their intention to visit the region again, underscoring the lasting impression made by the Lake Champlain Region. According to New York Bass Federation Official Nick Albano, the region is one of the most anticipated tournament locations. “Lake Champlain bass fishing, in my opinion, is the best in the Northeast,” he said. “The region is one of my favorite places to visit; the lake offers a tremendous amount of fishable water that no one person can cover in a lifetime. I’m really looking forward to the Bass Federation tournament this fall,” he said.

“The economic impact reflected in this study is significant, but I believe that this year the number may be even higher; our area hosted fewer tournaments than normal in 2023 due to the rotating location schedule and personal issues faced by a few of the organizers,” said Courtright.

The 2023 Lake Champlain Region bass tournament survey can be found at roostadk.com/research.

The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism is the destination marketing and management organization for Essex and Hamilton Counties, which includes the Whiteface Region, along with the communities of Lake Placid, Tupper Lake and Saranac Lake, all located within the Adirondacks in New York state.

The Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce serves as the Ticonderoga Area Business and Visitor Center and a leader in the economic vitality of the region. TACC serves and represents the communities of Ticonderoga, Crown Point, Hague, Moriah, and Putnam, NY.

Photo Credit: Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism.

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Community news stories come from press releases and other notices from organizations, businesses, state agencies and other groups. Submit your contributions to Almanack Editor Melissa Hart at editor@adirondackalmanack.com.




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