Conner Prairie infused $39.1 million into Indiana’s economy in 2016, according to results of a new economic impact study commissioned by the museum.
Funds spent at the museum, in Hamilton County and surrounding counties in addition to funds spent by Conner Prairie on local goods and services infused $5.9 million more into the state’s economy last year than in 2014, the year of the museum’s last economic impact study.
Spending generated by Conner Prairie also created 560 full-time, part-time, seasonal and temporary jobs, and generated $12.6 million in wage and salary income. Additionally, spending related to Conner Prairie in 2016 generated $10.2 million in local, state and federal taxes.
The purpose of the study, finalized in July by Certec Inc. of Versailles, Ky., was to quantify the economic impact of Conner Prairie by examining spending by visitors to the museum, purchases from museum vendors, the museum’s payroll and other museum outlays. Data were then used to determine direct expenditures, jobs, wages and tax revenues that affected the state, Hamilton County and Fishers economies from financial transactions in 2016.
“Conner Prairie excels at creating fun, memorable, and engaging learning experiences for every person who visits our grounds,” said Conner Prairie President and CEO Norman Burns. “Our strategy has proven effective at significantly increasing our annual attendance over the past five years, which has made us a substantial contributor to the local and state economy. Our strategic vision to become a major asset for culture, tourism and learning will certainly create more opportunities for substantial educational and economic impact in years to come.”
Last year, Conner Prairie welcomed 391,261 visitors through general admission, group and school tours, public education programs, Symphony on the Prairie, special events and member events.
Regarding Hamilton County, spending generated by Conner Prairie contributed $22 million to the Hamilton County economy and created 329 full-time equivalent jobs.
Conner Prairie’s economic impact to Fishers in 2016 was $8.7 million, which also created 129 full-time equivalent jobs and $2.9 million in wage and salary income.
Spending generated by Conner Prairie generated $13.7 million for counties contiguous to Hamilton County, including Marion ($12.7 million), Madison, Boone, Clinton, Hancock and Tipton counties. Spending in those counties also created 175 full-time equivalent jobs, including 152 in Marion County. In regard to outlying counties, spending generated by the museum generated $3.3 million and created 56 jobs, including $865,000 in wage and salary income.
Spanning more than 1,000 wooded acres in central Indiana, Conner Prairie welcomes nearly 400,000 visitors of all ages annually. As Indiana’s first Smithsonian Institute affiliate, Conner Prairie offers various outdoor, historically themed destinations and indoor experiential learning spaces that combine history and art with science, technology, engineering and math to offer an authentic look into history that shapes society today.
Conner Prairie’s mission is to inspire curiosity and foster learning about Indiana by providing engaging, individualized and unique experiences. Created by Eli Lilly in 1934, Conner Prairie combines history with science, technology, engineering and math and encourages visitors to explore Indiana’s natural and cultural heritage through hands-on, immersive and interactive experiences. Inspiring visitors of all ages to discover more about the events, discoveries and forces that shaped the American Midwest, Conner Prairie offers various historically themed, indoor and outdoor experience areas throughout its more than 1,000 acres of wooded property in Fishers, Ind. Indiana’s first Smithsonian Institute Affiliate and accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, Conner Prairie is a 501(c)3, non-profit organization that relies on grants and philanthropic donations from corporations and individuals for sustainability and growth. Visit connerprairie.org or call (800) 966-1836 for admission dates, hours, ticket prices and opportunities to donate and volunteer. Conner Prairie is on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Flickr and YouTube.