4.3% of Missouri's tourists bicycle or hike

A column by Rick Alm in today's Kansas City Star says:
Bike trails and tourism? You bet.

A recent survey by the University of Missouri estimated 4.3 percent of the state’s visitors engage in hiking and biking. That’s 1.6 million people.

The study suggests biking and hiking is a more frequent activity for tourists than boating and golf, and is almost as popular as gambling and nightlife.

According to the League of American Bicyclists, an estimated 57 million Americans ride a bike at least once a year.

Biking will take center stage next fall when the inaugural “Tour of Missouri” USA Cycling Pro Tour stage race launches Sept. 11 in Kansas City, with the finish line in St. Louis.

Officials announced the race earlier this year, touting its “rolling festival” effect.
A summary of the different reasons Missouri tourists visit the state, from the Economic Impact Report for Fiscal Year 2005, commissioned by the Missouri Division of Tourism and compiled by researchers at the University of Missouri, is available in PDF format.

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