© 2024 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
WEDH · WEDN · WEDW · WEDY
WECS · WEDW-FM · WNPR · WPKT · WRLI-FM · WVOF
Public Files Contact · ATSC 3.0 FAQ
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

April's solar eclipse greatly boosted tourism and visitor spending in Maine

Tanmoy Sarkar sets up his camera to capture the eclipse on the shore of Moosehead Lake on Monday April 8, 2024. He drove from Maryland to see the eclipse in Greenville, Maine.
Esta Pratt-Kielley
/
Maine Public
Tanmoy Sarkar sets up his camera to capture the eclipse on the shore of Moosehead Lake on Monday April 8, 2024. He drove from Maryland to see the eclipse in Greenville, Maine.

Spending by tourists in Maine increased by 23.4% during the solar eclipse in April, according to findings released by the Maine Office of Tourism on Tuesday evening.

Compared to 2023, hotel occupancy throughout the state went up by 47% while short-term rentals increased by 27%. Visitor spending at bars and other nightlife businesses increased by 79%, while gas stations and recreational businesses across the state saw a 45% increase.

Over five days this spring, visitors flocked throughout the state to get stationed for the solar eclipse. Aroostook County saw its visitor numbers rise by 40 percent, while western Maine saw a 25% increase. The largest share of out-of-state visitors came from Boston and New York. The Office of Tourism also noted a significant increase in visitors from Hartford, Connecticut; Providence, Rhode Island; and Burlington, Vermont.

Carolann Ouelette, the director of the Maine Office of Outdoor Recreation, said the eclipse provided a unique opportunity to attract visitors into the state during a traditionally slow time of the year.

“The welcome that visitors received and their introduction to more of Maine’s rich natural beauty supported Maine’s growing reputation as a travel destination," said Ouellette in the release. "Their appreciation is evident in the positive feedback we heard from communities about how respectful eclipse travelers were during their visit.”

The results were compiled by data firm Zartico by analyzing anonymized spending and geolocation data.

Nick Song is Maine Public's inaugural Emerging Voices Fellowship Reporter.


Originally from Southern California, Nick got his start in radio when he served as the programming director for his high school's radio station. He graduated with a degree in Journalism and History from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University -- where he was Co-News Director for WNUR 89.3 FM, the campus station.

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.

Related Content