Tourism through rose-colored glasses?

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

February 6th, 2018 3:30 PM

So "Tourism brings $225M to Oak Park" [Inside Report, Jan. 31]. I'd love to audit the evidence supporting that figure. I suspect it's a compilation of wild guesses viewed through the rose-colored lenses of someone who wants to justify their job.

I'm available pretty much any time to be persuaded by hard evidence that this isn't just another phony-baloney number similar to "economic impact" claims bandied about to justify public funding of sports facilities.

$225 million per year equates to more than $600,000 per day. If the average tourist spent $150 per person per day in Oak Park, which strikes me as an unreasonably high figure, we would have to have 4,000 tourists per day to reach that figure. The idea that Oak Park draws 4,000 tourists per day spending $150 each strikes me as preposterous. 

Bob Stigger

Oak Park

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  • Bruce Kline (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 7th, 2018 7:42 PM

    You're right. Totally preposterous. And what is even more so, is they have the gumption to actually believe we - the citizens of Oak Park - would believe such fanciful BS. Right out of Jonathon Gruber's economic playbook - that's for sure.

  • Brian Slowiak (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 7th, 2018 1:41 PM

    @ The Baroness of Bridgett: I suggest copy of the entire newspaper will be at the library.

  • Bridgett Baron (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 7th, 2018 12:22 PM

    Do you know where I can get a copy of their news release? Looking on Visit Oak Park's website, under About Us>News & Press Releases, I get a "content not found" page. I'm curious of their methodology for determining this number. And also interested in how they define "tourist." Does it include anyone not living in Oak Park? Is a River Forest resident considered a tourist in determining this $224.7MM/annual (and $616K/daily) figure?

  • Mike Hanline (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 7th, 2018 9:49 AM

    If tourism actually brought this much revenue to the village, our property taxes wouldn't be so high.

  • Brian Slowiak (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 6th, 2018 10:12 PM

    Remember when the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio sought a $30,000 one time gift from the Village of Oak Park to move an unsightly telephone pole from the boundary line of their property ? There was no such talk as $600,000 per day influx of cash that day.

  • Bill Dwyer (Facebook Verified)

    Posted: February 6th, 2018 7:17 PM

    Hmmm. You could sell out the one hotel in Oak Park, every Bed and Breakfast, every Air B n B, the Frank Lloyd Wright Studio and every restaurant and bar in he village, and not come remotely close to $600,000 daily average alleged by Visit Oak Park. Any credible study has footnotes showing how the its conclusion were arrived at. Does Visit Oak Park?

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