Duluth attracts more tourists despite historic flood

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Local sales tax collections show Duluth's hospitality industry continued to grow in 2012 despite a devastating flood in northeast Minnesota last June, the News Tribune reports.

“The fact that our local hospitality industry continued to grow is a testament to the fact that the city, Visit Duluth and its membership were so proactive in getting the word out that we were still open for business,” Gene Shaw, director of public relations for Visit Duluth, told the newspaper.

Hotels and motels took in 6.3 percent more revenue than they did the year before. Food and beverage sales also rose more than 4 percent in 2012.

Initially, the historic flood caused an estimated $3 million loss for the area’s tourism industry, but the industry bounced back relatively quickly, thanks in part to an ad campaign.

A recent survey by the University of Minnesota’s Tourism Center finds two-thirds of respondents expect to spend as much or more money on travel this year compared to 2012.

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