Visitor Numbers Up at Zion

Visitor Numbers Up at Zion

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(Springdale-AP) -- Zion National Park saw an increase in visitors in each month except January and August last year.

For the year visitors showed up more than two-(M)million, 600-thousand times.

That's more than park has seen in any year in a decade.

It also surpassed a previous high of two-point-five (M)million in 1996.

This town depends on tourism and gift-shop owner Laura Doty says the past two years have been good.

Doty says the park's bus shuttle system has created more of a buying environment in shops.

Despite 400 thousand extra tourists, Springdale didn't see a large boost from the resort tax, but town manager Glenn Hill says the amount collected has gone up steadily in the last three years.

Springdale collected 340 thousand dollars from the resort tax for the fiscal year that ended June 30th.

Increased tourism also helps the park. Eighty percent of the money collected by entrance fees stays in Zion as part of the fee demonstration program.

The money has been spent on a Human History Museum and campground improvements.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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