Crested Butte wasn’t the only Colorado town who saw another record breaking summer. It seems many of Colorado’s mountain towns are are seeing record summer visitors and not just this past year but for the last 5 consecutive years. Mountain towns are seeing record tax revenue, record lodging occupancy as well as record traffic. Depending on who you talk to, this is great news! Marketing efforts from local tourism associations seem to be paying off as we continue to see visitor numbers increase. If you ask the marketing teams, they are doing their job and doing it well. If you talk to the locals on the other hand, you might get a response more like “Make it stop”! The locals have watched their mountain towns claw their way back from the recession with no end to the momentum gained. Their favorite mountain trails, ski runs and local hangouts are becoming flooded with visitors. We are seeing more and more events and festivals popping up to attract more and more visitors. Many locals feel more attention needs to be turned to local issues such as affordable housing, transportation and mitigating the influx of tourists. There is a fine line between protecting the natural charm and beauty of our mountain towns and maintaining healthy tourism numbers as the hotel and restaurant dollars spent by our visitors is what keeps our mountain towns alive. As the Front Range population continues to grow, we’re going to continue seeing record numbers visiting our mountain towns. Our tourism associations will continue their marketing efforts to bring the much needed revenue into our towns. So where does Crested Butte fall in this growth? In July 2016 we were up 14% over July 2015. YTD through July numbers area already expected to be up 17%. So Are Colorado’s mountain towns too busy? Fifth consecutive record summer has people talking.
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