Standing high over the Rondout Creek on the picturesque Rosendale Trestle, Ulster County Executive Mike Hein delivered an important update regarding tourism spending, money spent by visitors to Ulster County, in 2014 – it is up. According to New York State, Ulster County’s tourism revenue for 2014 grew to $513,885,000, an increase of more than $8 million compared to the previous year. This is the fifth consecutive year that tourism spending has increased.
“Tourists from across the country, and in fact around the world, are coming to Ulster County to experience the beauty and vibrancy of the Catskills,” said Ulster County Executive Mike Hein. “Whether they are drawn for our history, rail trails, festivals or countless other attractions, there presence is an economic engine for the County. The stats released by New York State are impressive and we are proud of them; however, we are still not satisfied. We will continue to work to attract more tourists to Ulster County which is one of the reasons for our unprecedented $10 million ‘Building a Better Ulster County’ initiative to upgrade our infrastructure is so important. Better and safer roads with widened lanes and shoulders are attractive to cyclists and pedestrians, and right here in Rosendale we improved the roadway and shoulders of Elting Road so that now the Trestle is better connected with the downtown.”
Jeanne Walsh, Town of Rosendale Supervisor
“The County Executive’s investment in the infrastructure of Rosendale is much appreciated by residents and business owners,” said Jeanne Walsh, Town of Rosendale Supervisor. “I want to thank Mike Hein for contributing to the vibrancy of our Main Street corridor and increasing the safety of pedestrians and cyclists who access the rail trail and the Rosendale Trestle.”
Rick Remsnyder, Director of Ulster County Tourism
“The recently released stats from New York State are proof-positive that the County Executive’s commitment to promoting Ulster County and his vision for our tourism industry are paying dividends,” said Rick Remsnyder, Director of Ulster County Tourism. “We have become a premier destination for the 20 million people in the metro-New York area.”
The County Executive also took the opportunity while on the Rosendale Trestle to recognize John Fischer, the photographer whose stunning photo of the trestle serves as the cover of the 2015-2016 Ulster County Travel Guide. “The amazing photograph which is the cover of our Travel Guide is the result of the talents of John Fischer and I want to publicly thank him for helping show the world the beauty of Ulster County,” continued County Executive Hein. “When looking at pictures such as this, we are quickly reminded that visitors often come to enjoy our pristine outdoors; however, we have world-class events as well, such as the Rosendale Street Festival which runs this Saturday and Sunday. This is an extraordinary community event and I urge everyone to go, enjoy the music and experience Rosendale.”
The Rosendale Street Festival is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, July 18 and 19. The annual event which takes place on Main Street features live music, food and vendors. This year it will showcase 6 stages and 74 bands.
In addition to the increased tourism spending, Ulster County’s hotel bed tax receipts for the first half of 2015 have increased by 15%. This important revenue, which is paid primarily by visitors to Ulster County, helps ease the burden on County property taxpayers.