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Manitowoc sets record $226 million in tourism economic impact

Posted at 5:33 PM, Jun 17, 2024

MANITOWOC (NBC 26) — Another year, another record performance for Manitowoc tourism. The city that is performing well even when some features go away.

  • Manitowoc tourism beat its 2022 impact record, generating $226 million last year.
  • Director of Tourism, Courtney Hansen, says new places and events are driving the numbers.
  • Manitowoc det its new record despite the S.S. Badger having a shorter season in 2023.

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story.)

Manitowoc Director of Tourism Courtney Hansen says last year, Manitowoc tourism generated $226 million in economic impact.

"We're all really celebrating,” said Hansen. "Tourism is indeed thriving and visitors are coming to Manitowoc, spending money in Manitowoc, and really supporting our economy."

An impact that is a record for Manitowoc, up from $217 million in 2022, which was also a record.

This after the S.S. Badger was out of service for part of last season, following dock damage in Ludington, Michigan.

"There's just been so many new and exciting things and exciting events popping up that visitors are coming to experience that they just couldn't before,” Hansen said.

I caught up with a few of those visitors. Diane and Michael Malicki are from West Bend.

"We came to walk a section of the Ice Age Trail.” Diane said.

"We're picking up where we left off last year and continuing north,” added Michael.

They've been here just the two times, but say that they can see why so many people would like to visit even aside from a Badger trip.

"You know, with the boats, the museums, the biking and hiking along the lake,” said Diane.

The two told me they are impressed with the beauty of the lake shore and the city. A destination that they would now recommend.

"Oh sure, we were talking about it,” said Diane. “It would probably be nice to come and explore the downtown area”

"So, we'll be back!” Michael exclaimed.

The Badger is back for a planned full season, lasting until October. The ship can carry up to 600 people per day into our city.