BikeMaine 2019 releases economic impact report

By Fran Gonzalez | Nov 22, 2019
Photo by: Fran Gonzalez A mobile tent city descends upon Belfast at Steamboat Landing Park along the waterfront Sept. 12 for BikeMaine 2019. This year's economic impact on Maine's local economy totaled $906,000, an increase of 22% over last year.

Belfast — The Bicycle Coalition of Maine hosted its seventh annual BikeMaine cycling tour Sept. 7-14 this year, stopping in Belfast for two days at Steamboat Landing Park along the waterfront.

After spending two days and nights in town, participants finished the 325-mile tour back at the starting point in Waterville.

According to a press release from BikeMaine 2019, over the course of the seven-day tour, the group's economic impact totaled $906,000. This included $677,000 spent by the 450 riders in addition to their event registration fees, and $228,000 spent by the Bicycle Coalition of Maine to produce the event, which includes most meals for the participants.

The 2019 economic impact represents a 22% increase over the $741,000 generated by BikeMaine 2018. Since its inaugural ride in 2013, BikeMaine has contributed more than $4 million to Maine's local economy, the press release said.

"BikeMaine continues to fulfill its mission of using bicycle tourism as an economic development tool for Maine," said Ride Director Will Elting. "As much as possible, food — the event's single largest expense — is purchased from Maine farmers, lobstermen and growers, highlighting Maine products and local services."

Food sourcing and menu creation for BikeMaine is done in partnership with the Maine Farm and Sea Cooperative. About 70% of all event food was purchased within 75 miles of the event region, according to the coalition.

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