Nearly $7 Million Generated Annually for the District of Columbia by Washington International Horse Show
RELEASE: March 9, 2009
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By Diana DeRosa
The Washington International Horse Show (WIHS), a major equestrian event based in Washington, DC, since 1958, generates nearly $7 million in economic impact to the District of Columbia annually, according to a recent study conducted by Stephen S. Fuller, PhD, Dwight Schar Faculty Chair and Director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA.
“During these difficult economic times, it was important for the show to evaluate its spending and its positive financial impact on the city. We want to ensure that the show not only continues to thrive but also contributes to Washington, our home for 50 years. We are very happy with Dr. Fuller's findings,” said Juliet Reid, President, WIHS.
“The direct spending by WIHS to stage the show in October 2008 and the spending by vendors, exhibitors, competitors and attendees while in the city participating or attending the show generate significant economic benefits for the District of Columbia economy,” said Fuller.
“The impact of the show also underscores the interdependence of the region. The show’s unique offering, a competition including Olympic and professional riders, attracts visitors from the suburbs, who attend the show and in so doing, rediscover the benefits of the District and then return again and again throughout the year.”
The study examined total outlays for the six-day horse show, which included staging the show, outlays by more than 50 vendors and 1,500 exhibitors and competitors, and on- and off-site spending by 20,000 attendees for consumer goods and services. The total value of goods and services generated directly and indirectly was $6.7 million for the 2008 event. The show's economic impact also included $730,000 in new personal earnings benefiting workers residing in the city and supported 36 full-time, year-round equivalent jobs locally and elsewhere in the broader economy.
“The Washington International Horse Show is a cornerstone of equestrian competition in the U.S.,” said Tony Hitchcock, Chief Executive Officer of WIHS. “For decades, this year-end indoor horse show has been the engine driving horse show competition from coast to coast. Horse trainers and riders work hard each year to qualify to show in this prestigious event,” he said. “Our immediate goals for 2009 are to continue the event’s proud traditions while reaching out to the city and community to build new business relationships that will benefit both the horse show and the greater Washington region.”
The Washington International Horse Show Association, Ltd., is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The 51st WIHS will be held October 20-25, 2009, at Verizon Center in Washington, D.C.
An equestrian tradition since 1958, the Washington International Horse Show attracts horses and riders of all ages, including Olympic champions from all over the world. They travel to the nation's capital for thrilling jumping competition and a chance to compete for more than $400,000 in prize money and championship titles. About 500 horses participate in show jumping, hunters, equitation and dressage events during the six-day show. Special exhibitions, unique boutique shopping, community and charity events as well as a Pony Pavilion with free pony rides round out this family-friendly show. Since its debut, the Washington International Horse Show has been a popular Washington, DC, fixture visited by presidents, first ladies, celebrities, business and military leaders, as well as countless horse enthusiasts of all ages. For more information, visit www.wihs.org