A Tourism Based Economy

Outfitter Contributions to our Community

WVPRO’s ranks include many of the original river outfitting families who early on recognized the power and beauty of these river resources, creating an industry whose economic impacts and benefits for the community have been far reaching, yet to reach full potential. “The facilities, services and promotional efforts of commercial whitewater outfitters in West Virginia are among the best in the nation, helping maintain the state’s competitive advantage as an adventure travel destination.” (LAC study 1995)

  • With $537 billion in sales, “travel and tourism” is the nation’s third largest retail sales industry in the U.S. behind automobiles and food stores. (America Outdoors)
  • Without tax revenue generated from tourism, every U.S. household would pay $936 more in taxes annually. (America Outdoors)
  • Total 2002 West Virginia visitor spending expenditures was equal to $3.5 billion. (WV Division of Tourism)
  • Total 2001 West Virginia visitor state tax revenue equaled 187 million. (WV Division of Tourism)
  • The whitewater rafting industry is critical to many of our rural economies.
  • Over 140,000 guests raft and recreate with our membership within a 8 month time-period contributing a conservative economic impact of more than $40 million annually
  • New & Gauley Outfitters and employees contribute over $3.5 million in combined taxes annualy.
  • New & Gauley Outfitters contribute over $900,000 in combined insurance premiums annualy.
  • New & Gauley Outfitters contribute over $3.5 million annualy in marketing of the region & state of West Virginia. (Contribution before Division of Tourism Cooperative matching grants)
  • Annual employee payroll exceeds $8.4 million with over $7.5 million spent annually with local and out of state vendors.
  • New & Gauley outfitters distribute over 5.6 million catalogues, DVD’s, and rack cards annualy. A significant contribution to the marketing of the state and region.
  • New & Gauley outfitters employs over 1,600 full time & seasonal employees.
  • Local restaurants, retail stores, gas stations, motels and hotels, and nightclubs, within a 50-mile radius of rafted river, benefit from 35% to 41% of total direct visitor spending. (LAC Study, 1995)
  • The whitewater industry participates in National River Clean-up week each spring in partnership with America Outdoors, the DNR, and NPS.

West Virginia Professional River Outfitters
PO Box 32
Fayetteville, WV 25840
(304) 574-2343