Tourism in Medora | VideoAndrew Keller | 7/20/2009
On a Monday, you may not imagine the streets of Medora bustling with people. But, there were plenty of people walking the sidewalks. And business owners say it`s busier than last year.
"Visitation is up quite a bit, and I think most of that has been impacted by gas prices coming down, it`s really wonderful to see a lot more motorhomes coming into town, a line-up down to here to get into the National Park," says Jil Baird, a business owner in Medora.
The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation says it`s also on par for a better year even though things got off to a rough start.
"Historically, July and August are busy months for us, so we`re looking good and we`re optimistic that we`re going to have an upswing at the end of the season," says tourism manager Annette Schilling.
With the nation in an economic downturn, tourists may be looking at studies to choose their travel destination. AAA has named North Dakota as the most affordable state to visit, and to top that off, Cambridge University in London has named North Dakota as the most friendly state to visit.
"It`s very affordable, fuel isn`t as bad as it was last year, I would say that`s probably a big reason why people decided to take the cheaper route and they`re getting a big benefit for it," says Kelly Hamm, who is visiting from Winnipeg with his family.
He says Medora offers everything a family looks for in a vacation that`s not far from home, and his kids back that statement up.
"I wish I could come here all the time," says daughter Kaitlyn.
With lower gas prices and a strong North Dakota economy, Medora is optimistic numbers will be up from last year.
Medora business owners hope the price of gas will continue to stay down so tourists continue to come to the city.