CVB bring tourists - and dollars - to OKC
If it looks like there are more visitors walking the streets of OKC, eating in our food establishments and attending conventions or sporting events, it’s probably due to the hard work of the Greater Oklahoma City Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB).
While many are aware of high-profile events like the made-for-TV American Ninja Warrior competition, the Women’s College World Series, Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship, the U.S. Mayor’s Conference, and several national equine events, there are many, lesser-known, groups that are also holding events here.
Groups like the International Association of Minister’s Wives and Minister’s Widows, Inc., the National Association of Cancer Center Development Officers, the International Downtown Association, the Center for Deployment Psychology, the American Membrane Technology Association, the Navy Office of Community Outreach, the Voluntary Protection Programs Participants' Association, Inc., and USRowing’s Central Youth Rowing Championship 2019 are all being held in Oklahoma City. (Click here for a full list of upcoming events.)
Mike Carrier, CVB president, says there are many factors that lead to the growth and success of the convention and tourism business in OKC. “Over the past 12 months, the Civic Center Music Hall celebrated their 80th season, Remington Park began their 30th year of business and the Dodgers saw 13 players advance to the major leagues. An Affair of the Heart was named the number one arts and crafts show in the country. Expanded air service from Will Rogers World Airport plus the recent and upcoming launches of new hotel brands speak to the growth and momentum that OKC is experiencing.”
For the first time in history, last fiscal year Oklahoma City exceeded $15 million in total hotel room tax, an increase over the previous fiscal year of 7.5 percent. Hotel revenue increased 8.6 percent and the number of hotel rooms in OKC increased by more than 4 percent.
By the numbers alone, the CVB provided registration/servicing to 263 groups/reunions, equine events, conventions and sports activities; helped provide $13.375 million in sales tax revenue to the city’s coffers; and brought enough visitors to OKC to account for 4.1 million hotel room nights. Those are impressive numbers.
“National associations and meeting planners have taken notice of Oklahoma City more than ever before, thanks to the many new projects and quality of life improvements made,” added Carrier. “We have much to look forward to when our new attractions and services begin their operations as the new convention center and Omni hotel will be game-changers for us.”