BOWLING GREEN, Ky.- May 17, 2011 - Statistics released this week by the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet report that total tourism expenditures in Warren County increased by 5.8 percent in 2010 to $324.8 million, up from $306.9 million in 2009. Tourism spending in the state increased by 4.8% in 2010 after seeing a statewide decline in 2009, however Warren County and the Cave region saw a 2009 gain of .6%. Total tourism impact across the state in 2010 was $11.3 billion, and the industry was responsible for 169,258 jobs. Certec Consulting, Inc. compiled the figures.

“Bowling Green and the region benefited from several significant tourism events in 2010 including the Hot Rod Power Tour in June and a large increase in youth softball tournaments throughout the summer,” said Vicki Fitch, Executive Director of the Bowling Green Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Expansion at Beech Bend’s Splash Lagoon and new exhibits at the National Corvette Museum, the Historic Railpark & Train Museum, and the Kentucky Museum enticed visitors to return to our area.”

The ten-county Cave Region group in which Warren County is included saw an increase of 5.5% in direct tourism expenditures equaling $327,305,390, adding an overall amount of $514,524,073 in total expenditures to the region’s economy. All counties saw increases in 2010 except Simpson, which decreased by about $600,000 in direct expenditures.

Warren County had the largest increase in the region followed by Barren with a 5.2% increase. Warren County again ranks 5th out of the120 counties in total tourism expenditures for the year. Jefferson County led with $2.68 billion in total impact, followed by Fayette with $1.79 billion. The counties of Boone and Kenton in Northern Kentucky were next with $1.27 billion and $922 million in total expenditures.