10th Annual Jersey Shorecast 2018
Welcome. To the 10th annual Shore, cast. Rate. This. Is a big one for us we've been around for 10 years now I haven't, been around with it for 10 years but Shore, cast has been around so, and thank you for coming this is great for. Those who may not know I'm Romie pandit executive. Director for the Lloyd D Levinson, Institute of gaming, hospitality, and tourism I know it's a mouthful at Stockton University. Welcome. Again, today. We have. A couple things going on first we have a speaker, a very. Well. Known speaker. And he's, been. Phenomenal, for the area and you. All know him Anthony. Kenan, oh so let. Me just talk about Lake City for a minute over the last two years I've, given speeches in st. Louis Washington. DC, Philadelphia. And New York, City I've, talked to travel writers tour. Operators. Travel. Agents about, Atlantic, City and what's happening, and in. Almost every, city, the reaction was the same we, had no idea what's, going on in alack City right under our noses, alack city's been the victim of some lazy reporting, they, like, our numbers, were so incredible, for so long. Any-any, need to turn detraction. From that or any downturn, in that they, were caught, you know the sky is falling the place is going down the toilet, one guy I sent with one investor, of trying, to raise money for the pier he said are you kidding me he goes look at that place in five years you're looking at Beirut now that's the term you use I said, that's not the case you have to look at the numbers but they, weren't looking at the numbers. So. You, know here's. Here's my thing I said look if 40. Years ago the. Original proponents, of casino, gaming, came. To us and said listen and 40. Years you're. Gonna have the, second largest gaming, market in the country two hundred billion dollars in gaming, revenue two, billion dollars in non gaming revenue 25, million visitors over, a billion dollars in capital improvement, a university. Coming in a first-class. Shopping. Center a major housing project how, would that sound we'd say yeah. We'd say hell yeah well, that's we have today the, problem is. Actually almost double that for a while so. Laxity, had lightning in a bottle and like all good things people. Are gonna realize wow, we, want some of that so they pried a little for a bottle and the competition, poached half our business but. In. Reality our business, is still strong. People. Are investing. Now. Some. Of our decline. Has. Been self-inflicted, let's. Face it you know let's put it on the table we had some self-inflicted. Wounds here we. Build a mega-resort and by. Its own admission had misguided marketing, and bad debt but that's coming back, we. Have properties that were popular and profitable, but. Because of some corporate maneuvering without, regard for the market or the people Atlantic City property. Was closed and let. Me tell you something that represented. 24%. Of steel piers market when that building closed so, that was a real, kick. In our butt and then. We. Had another property, for six years under hedge fund management just, was mismanaged, treated. Poorly and eventually. When the but when the mortgage holder took it over and started, to turn the property around it, was hit by a strike which closed it that, was 26. Percent of our business so, we're sitting there and our little patch of the boardwalk, we, lost 40, almost 50 percent of our business with two closings, we, didn't get much out of revel because it was new, but, 46. Percent but, you know what we, didn't stop we said we need to do something different we need to do something iconic so. We. Decided you, know we have to make this last, somehow, and we, know the markets there in, 2017. We, had our worst year, in business but. We. Had the best fourth of July weekend in our history so what's that tell us the. Markets still there it's batter and it's bruised but if you give them a reason to come we. Know the market was still there and, I'll. Tell you. We. Really. Could. See through. All of our demographics, are X's, exit, surveys, that. People still, want a family entertainment still, wanted something different, from casinos. So. This, brings us to the observation, wheel we. Knew in Atlantic City that we, needed an iconic. Action something, that had to be bigger. Better, less, seasonal, and, something, that people of all ages can enjoy so. The observation will, seem like the obvious answer, in. Closing, I have. To tell you the wheel has opened up to and, it's meeting all our expectations, our. Our, variety or ridership, is great. The. Thing we're most excited about it's become the centerpiece, of the resurgence, of Atlantic City so, you'll, see it we're seeing it in more print media as it goes along and. It's. Really. It's. Really a good feeling for us to see something like this, take.
Hold. So. I would invite. All of you to come out and take a stroll on the boardwalk and, and ride the ride even. If it's a little cold or a little warm but we'll we'll, take care of you because it's climate-controlled, and just. Enjoy the, Atlantic. City which is the original world's, favorite playground but thank you for your time I appreciate it. And. Folks I'm certain, that the, wheel is gonna do for. Atlantic City what the eye has, done for London so, good. Job Tony it's gonna work now. I'm gonna take you to our esteemed panel, here and, they're gonna tell us a lot more about what's. Really happening, we, have. Unfortunately. Michael. Butler our, professor. From Stockton, had, an emergency and couldn't make it but. We have. Mike. Tidwell, here from. Stockton. Seaview Hotel he's, gonna represent the industry the Director of Sales and Marketing here. Brian, Tyrell from Stockton, University professor. Of hospitality, and tourism. Diane. Weiland, Diane, is, director. Of Cape May County Tourism. Department. And. Jim. Wood chief. Executive officer, me, desi, Jim's. Iris. Your. Vice. President, of sales at the Tropicana, thank you gentlemen and ladies for, being here we're, looking for an exciting discussion today some, of the, 2017. Numbers. That we saw from. The division, of travel. And tourism and from the DGE. Visitation. Is up 2.3, percent. Tourism. Industry, generated, forty five point four billion in economic impact, up. 2.9, percent all, positives, thus far, lodging. Accounts, for about twenty eight percent of visitor spending. Average. Occupancy czar up which means despite. The, number of rooms available, going, up occupancy. Is going up that's a good thing. Atlantic. City casinos, finished, 2017. On. A positive, two point two percent, fantastic. Results, those. Are what have. Been published, how, did the local, tourism industry, do and I know some of you were on the panel last year with us so. Give me a feel give, the audience, a, feel of what you thought that. The predictions, were and how it really, played out I'll, touch on a Tropicana. We or coming off a great, 2017. Of, course, there's. A gaming revenue but what's more passionate. That we're all passionate about here is retail. The entertainment, the dining, the lodging, and every. One of our, measurements. Were up, year-over-year you. Know we kind of look at the summer season as, Memorial, Day to Labor Day as, many of you do but, a jet skier, ziering. Down on July in August, last July, we ran ninety. Seven point three percent occupancy, and in, August. It was ninety eight point zero so. That's with over twenty three hundred rooms you'll, love that length to stay just, because to. Get eighteen hundred checkouts, and eighteen hundred check-ins can be a little operationally. Challenging, but. Or, our. Emphasis has been improving, the customer experience so.
That's With again. New, new, and improved rooms, and, new restaurants. So. That we're continuing. A path in 2018. For that as well one, of the things that we have been really successful with is weddings, and so we saw a really strong year, in. 1617. Which is our fiscal year and weddings and the nice thing is it's waterproof so. If it rains the wedding is still going to happen and so we know what our capture, rate will be and then we kind of can layer and plan on top of that so so it was really good. In. That respect what, we did see on the, occupancy standpoint, as traditionally. We. Would fill on any, given weekend we'd be full two weeks prior and the window was much shorter now so where, we were a full two weeks prior now it's three days and so, that window is closed and. Then finally the length of stay is down to about one and a half nights here so, we'd like to extend that a little further we can't put our finger on it yet but um could, be partially weather driven the, weddings contribute, to that as well because most of the weddings are just a one-night stay so. Those were the dynamics, and finally, we did still maintain, pricing power so we were able to drive rate in. All seasons, and so that's kind of the overall. For last year that we saw there. Were a couple exceptions two out of the state certainly in Atlantic County was one of them you. Know some some declines, marginal, declines, 2.6. Percent I think and lodging revenue last lodging, revenue last year of, course that's going to turnaround this year with the opening. Of the new casinos, the total revenue should almost. Assuredly, be up the. Only the only other exceptions. Throughout the state to the you know positive, news that we saw. Was. Really not all that negative. There. Were a few towns along the Delaware River a, few counties, that. Had seen some exceptional. Performance, the prior two, years. Last. Year I'm sorry 2016. With the Democratic. National Convention and, the, prior year with the Pope that.
Inevitably, They were gonna be a little bit down the following, year I remember, speaking with one hotel, owner. Up in Cherry, Hill and, he, told me corporate, just doesn't understand, the, Pope doesn't come around every year, in. Cape May County we have predicted and we've always had a steady. Incline, since. Records. Were first done with his division of travel and tourism a tour in 1994. Our, tourism revenue, was two billion dollars, and at the time people would say you, know billion, with a B because it was just a whole number that we didn't even think, was happening in the tourism industry we're, now 6.7. Billion dollar industry so, you know fast-forward, 23, years we're, doing, a very well. And and we experienced, the moderating, increase. Why same. As Brian. Said was, we. Had a 5%, increase last year and now we have a 1.4, and you, know but it's all positive. And where we saw our most growth was in food and beverage and. We. Were up in lodging, and we, actually, when we do the counts and I count everything and some, people say if you stand still too long in gate, me County I'll count you and that, lengthy truth but. We had more cars coming in through the Garden, State Parkway which, is a barometer, we, use so through the great egg toll plaza and the Cape May toll plaza we, saw about 88 thousand more cars but. We didn't see them in the summer and what was happening, is July, was a terrible, north the, rain you know just just driving, home that point that it's we're so weather driven, and weather, dependent, we had 12, days of either rain or overcast. The, the rain impacted, the recreation. And outdoor activities which, were so dependent on in, Cape May County we, still rank the, highest and, generating, recreation. And. Outdoor of. Revenue. We. Were down less, than one percent which was six, point six million dollars, so, the rain certainly had a major impact on that but, when we look at it and we kind of dissect where, what's happening, we've been doing a really, intensive. Fall campaign, for, about five years bringing. People back and, you know we think it's the best time to be in Katy County or to be in the entire region weather, is still great but, we needed to make sure that our visitors, who, primarily. Think, there's nothing to do after the summer think we had to let them know that there is plenty to do and and, what did we tie in we tied in our beverage tourism, we have seven wineries, we, have ten breweries, and three distilleries, while. They are not making a huge impact in the food and beverage we. Look at them as our attractions, and as, a hook, to bring people, back and, give them something to do and, we did a tourism, agritourism. Survey. Focusing, on the wineries, breweries and distilleries, that helped guide us and, while we all thought that the breweries, and distilleries. Wineries, were a millennia, attraction, we found out to 55%, of our visitors are still baby boomers so, you know we were able to target using, our research, and spread. The. Tourism. Season and allow us to still experience. A moderate, increase. In tourism revenue in all, of our sectors but recreation, basically. We're. Gonna continue on that see, you know this is a good place this whole destination.
You, Know with the gaming as well you know we're giving people a lot of opportunities, to come back in the fall in the winter and increase. The visitation, and visitor spending seventy, was a good very, good year in the group market it's as a segment that we've been building. On since the formation of meet AC in the summer of 2014. And. In the and, so it's really interesting what, we do we're we're long-range Booker's. So we're selling, Atlantic, City up. To seven years out and when we started in 2014. We. Were really very much a. Year. To 18 months out destination. In terms of convention sales so. We tweaked some strategies, made. Some adjustments and, right now I can tell you that we've got business on the books booked through 2025. And so. We're really starting to see that growth and that's what we're trying to do is layer business, book more business. And. We've we've. Also been able to drive, more business into, the summer months last. Year was a, very very good year for us from. A room night standpoint, from a booking standpoint, and just. Over the three and a half years now we've booked just over a million room. Nights in the convention, market, and so, this is what what. These guys would call cash rooms, they. Like cash rooms to augment, they're. Either gaming customer, and. We. Are funded by the CR da so from. A from. A analysis. Standpoint for every one dollar we. Receive from the. Luxury tax we're now returning $48, back to the local economy so. We have very very good ROI, it's it's strong in. The group market we've. Also saw and most of you know this there's. Been a lot, of investment by the properties, to, go after the group customer, we saw, the addition, of. What. Happened at Harris with their waterfront conference center Resorts. The Claridge other properties have upgraded the bore God has added meeting space so, everybody's very very bullish on the meeting space and every, property has reported back to us in 2017. That they've had growth in the, meetings market so we'll, continue to do what we do it's it's a it's, a market segment that, is growing but incrementally, we, do have a few barriers here, in Atlantic City but.
We're We continue to work, through those barriers regardless. That. Of the obstacles, that we have and we. Still see the group market to be a very very flourishing. Prosperous, market for a see for years to come, thank. You Jim that's good news indeed 4:17. We just got to make sure that all, those customers we booked seven years ago know about the wheel that's coming up right. There. Let's. Go on to 18. What. Do we predict, for. 2018. Season. And thereafter, we've. Been selling 18 for the last five years so it's. It's, kind of is really interesting and as we continue to kind of position convention. Business in the Atlantic City Convention Center and a little bit into Boardwalk Hall and of course the hotel properties, the casinos are all going. After the group market we 2018. Is going to be a very good year for us. And. I and I will tell you what what our early returns are and I'm gonna I'm gonna even kind of jump, a little bit 2019. Is looking very very strong for us so, right now one of the things that we measure through, a trends analysis and projections, report is to, take a look at our, growth in what's happening, in, terms of pace so we are at about a hundred and five percent of pace from, where we were a year ago so we've seen growth and next, year we're at a hundred and twenty two percent of pace so, we know what's happening and trending right now is that we're. Seeing great demand and we're having excellent conversion, our conversion, rates for this year at thirty five percent our. Competitions, at about twenty seven percent so. That means we're booking one out of every three conventions, booking definite our, competition, is one out of almost every four so. 18. Is looking very very good for us right now twenty, twenty eighteen already is off to a great, start, also, in I head up the meanings conventions, trade shows banquets, and we're, definitely, definitely. Sitting, in, a good spot right now we're we're, up year-over-year we're up over budget. Summer, months is. More, transient. It's more tourism and then in the fall takes off again and whereas. I we're, very proud of the repeat business and we do because, that's a true testament of, do, they have a good experience or, they rebooking. Jess's. Excited. About, the new business that's, coming online, some. Really strong pieces, of group, business that are booked for the Fall that, have not been with us in the past but the. Corporate market really seems to be be, growing so. We're. Really happy about that, the challenge here is the, weekends behave we get compression, from Atlantic City and as I said the. Weddings are strong but midweek, especially. On the transient side a property like ours, struggles, the Gulf is a big draw but, that's where our work is in the summer is really filling in the midweek we're. Fortunate we've got a lot of repeat group business a lot of companies have been with Seaview for 25, and more years so we, have a nice advantage there but so as, both Jim's alluded to group is important to us especially because of how.
Much Midweek contribution, they bring last. Year we conducted a visitor profile, study, in the, Long Beach Island region, the LBI barrier, island, and the. Mainland as well in Southern Ocean County for the Southern Ocean County Chamber there's. A question, that's on every visitor profile, study, where did you stay. When you were in town if you stayed overnight and. We modified that question. Whereas, we normally, ask a question. Particularly. Along. The Jersey Shore did, you stay in a you. Know a rental, apartment or condominium or, home this, time we differentiated. Between one, that was rented, through a traditional. Real estate agent, which. Has has been the norm in New Jersey for decades, or. Longer. And. Differentiating. Between now and those that. Rented. It through a shared economy service. Like VRBO or home away or Airbnb, or something, of that nature. We. Were really surprised, at the results, on the, island itself and on long, beach island. Communities. On, the barrier island, there it. Was I, want to say about 23%. Of the total market had rented, through you. Know had, rented, a, second, home condo apartment. That. Was. Broken down into. I. Think it was, 14%. Through. A traditional, real estate agent, but it was 9%, through, this VRBO the, vacation, rental by owner, and. That was fairly. Significant. I suppose. You know that's just a snapshot we. Don't know is this detracting. From the real estate listings, or just adding to it certainly. The idea that you you, could have more, total visitors, on a given, day given, the increase, in supply it's, a very real thing and there's there's, a lot of the tourism. Sector. That's going to benefit, from having more individuals. But. There remains the question of the occupancy, tax that. Helps, to fund some of the stuff that Diane, and Jim, and others do in. Terms of attracting visitors, to. This state, what's. Going on there air B&B I understand. Is recently. Come to agreement, with at. Least Jersey City and then North possibly, Newark as well to, start contributing to that occupancy. Tax, so that we really enjoyed seeing to see where this goes, so. Let's talk about some. Economic, impacts, in terms of what areas should landok, City focus, on to. Promote economic stability. Sustained. Growth. Transformation. To. A year-round destination, I. Think, in. Such a great direction, with the, entertainment offering, and I. Know, our summer. Entertainment. Schedule, is is the best I've seen, since, I've been there and then you have the, Hard Rock juice coming in who's not afraid to put in acts, like a Counting Crows on a Thursday, night and and I think that that's, gonna help all of us it's you've, got people who normally, wouldn't be in a link saving on a Thursday night and they're gonna be looking at you, know dining, and, Steel, Pier and going, grab, a margarita. Margaritaville. Or maybe even coming, over to the quarter so so, I'm I'm, really, impressed. With that entertainment. And and the. Some. Of the the food and beverage offerings and. You know walking. Down the boardwalk from Tropicana, there's that new beer garden if you haven't seen it as really, impressive, that the bungalow, Beach owners. Have put forth and that's that's, gonna be a good experience and the more more. Of those options. That we have for our customers, it is, going to help extend the stay I know you know we talked earlier, you know you're always trying, to get them a convention, area or greatest, win really is when, they come, here as an, individual, attended, Convention and then come back with their family and that that's a real, win for all of us you. Know one of the one of the biggest changes that I saw in Atlantic, City post, Pennsylvania. Gaming in. Terms, of the macroeconomy was. A shortening, of the season if you will and, anecdotally. We hear you, know you. Know business was clustered around that weekend, so to the extent to which you. Know we're gonna have these, entertainment.
Options, New. Facilities, to go view observation. Wheels are, that are available on, the shoulder seasons or, midweek and, that's a wonderful thing and I think you, know I and, I'm, very optimistic as. I think most people are when they think about Atlantic, City and I think importantly as well you've got new. Entrance, to the market, you've got corporate, entities, that are coming into the Atlantic City market that have have, not done business there in the past and that puts pressure, on the existing. Businesses. To upgrade their product, and offer more entertainment. You, know if they see at work in midweek they've, got to try and make them what make, work, midweek, as well so, I think all this is very exciting and pretends to some, very positive things for Atlantic City again. What can we do new, whom. Can we bring in here to, help, continue. To improve the economy to diversify, our economy and, obviously. The. Constant, approach on leisure is so important. But right now we're conducting a study on eSports. We. Know that it's the fastest, growing segment. And it's. The second, most. Participated. Sports. Segment to have of what of your ship to. National, Football League and okay. You'll want to give you a whole hour presentation, on what's happening, in the eSports segment, but, what we're looking to do is is, is. There an opportunity for Atlantic City to, grow. Into this segment, can we put together kind of an eSports arena, what, does that look like. Who. We work with who would be partner with there's, about 12 to 15 primary. Video games that people play online, worldwide. And, and. This is a this, is a new economy that's emerging, that has emerged that. Some. Of you may have kids, that play video games and you're probably saying get off the games go outside and play and now. You've got teams being. Formed and you've got NFL, franchises, that are hiring, players. NBA. Teams hiring, players. To. The in and some of these franchises, are starting off are at the tune of 20 million dollars and we, see prize money anywhere, is between on a low-end small weekend tournament of $5,000. To, a national, tournament that might be at Staples, Center in Los Angeles, with. Million-dollar prize money it's, it's a whole new, business opportunity, that we're looking at and if. We're successful with that we see a great, opportunity to, attract a lot of eSports, tournaments, pushing. That business throughout, the local. Area so, that everybody gets a piece of the action we want to see them you know at the steel pier we want to see them at the Trop we want to see them on the golf courses when, they're not, participating. And, really be a hub here on the East Coast for that segment of business what, I want to talk about is when you talk about expanding, and our, opportunities. We're, not so much into the eSports, but just sports, tourism has, become, huge, in our area. It's basically. Shoulder, season events, when you have delemus sports who does escape the Cape and you have 2,500. People jumping off the back of the cake me Lois Barry I mean, that's amazing, I don't know the one. Dony, I wouldn't do that either but, you, know when you see that there's 25, participants but. They come with their families their fans their you know friends, who cheer, them on and and, it's a it's a triathlon. That you know takes over, a day it's now has a children's, component. To it you, know you can get in any part of this and it's an entire weekend, and as we see them build up and fill in our our shoulder, seats and weekends, we are seeing more and more people coming and it's like what. Else are they doing while they're here they're at the restaurants, they're at the retail shops they're you, know at our attractions. We're seeing ecotourism. It's, a six hundred million dollar industry in Cape May County I mean who knew how many people, in, in, this whole country that are interested, in birding, and how important, it is to our area, when you think about you, know the world series of birding which is taking place this week it's, in its 35th, year and they have sponsors, from all over the world nikon, camera, like, swarovski. Crystal these are all people corporations. That are sport sponsoring. And bringing. Teams from around the world to keep me County you know to find how many birds can they identify. In. 24 hours and while it's throughout the state of New Jersey it's pretty much based right in Cape May County in, the city of Cape May and these. Are the things that we need to work and we work to you, know make, our visitors know that these are you know we're number, three of the top three birding hotspots in, North America, and you.
Know There's only two places that have in the country that has a, tourism. Infrastructure, that's. So close to a touring. Hotspot so you can be at a spa morning, you could have gourmet, dinner. And you can bird in the afternoon, I mean these normally, when they're burning they're going to you know they're they're roughing it and hiking, and camping you, know in in. Pursuit. Of that bird, or to add to their life list we have it all and they can spend their evenings at, the entertainment and ionic city there's the dining, there's the. Gaming soon alien we've expanded, in and giving these birders, who, are spending, a lot of money in pursuit, of identifying. Birds and they're spending a lot of money elsewhere, supporting, the tourism industry so that's, really important, when we look at the summer season just gets shorter and shorter and shorter our, businesses, can't make the. Money in a 10-week especially, if you have a rainy July, but. They can make dollars if they stay open longer and they. Support. These other. Eco. And Agri tourism attractions. That we have so, that's can what we're doing to expand, and, make sure that you, know we are bringing our visitors back we have 40, 41. Percent, of our summer visitors, come back in the fall 15 percent come back in the winter so it's a growth area and we still have plenty of you, know work to do to make that you know make us more of an eight nine month season for. Cape May County and, you. Know little steps at a time always baby steps but you know we are seeing an increase so, that is what we're doing here and I think that it works to expand, when we look at Atlantic County and Cumberland, County as well thank. You so before I open, up to questions, from. The audience there's, one last thing that I'm sure everybody wants to talk about. SCOTUS. Has, shot down pacifier. And what, is the impact gonna be so. I'm going to open up for the panel to talk about what. Is sports betting gonna do for Atlantic City everybody. Wants to know about that. Crystal. Ball says you know I'm. Not going to kid you we're not going to be ready in two weeks like the, Meadowlands, is talking about we're we're. Definitely going, to see how the regulations, pan out but there. Is definitely been preparation. We are very, excited yesterday, was a big, day for Atlantic. City and stay, in New Jersey and. Even. Without. It you. Come down and see the crowds and chikki and Peet's and the damn good sports bar during a Thursday. Opening, of n-c-double-a tournament and, it, tells you and I found out in Vegas during, those times and for, the Super Bowl and the NCAA, tournament and we. Will get visitors, here, and and. They, will eat and they will drink and don't, play some bets what. What, that looks like I think we're all waiting. To see is it going to be a lot, of a mobile platform or is it going to be a lot of parlay, bats. Or, is it going to be strictly illegals. You know covering, three and a half points on the Dallas Cowboys and and, some, of the other things, that you're used to seeing and in Las Vegas so I think this is just tip, of the iceberg, and it's definitely. Good news for Lake City. You. Know when you look at Las Vegas, and their gaming, revenues, the. Sports books are, not an overwhelmingly, large, percent. Of the gaming, revenue I think it's one. Percent yeah, it's. Fairly small and even at the bigger sports, books, some. Of them invest a little bit more on that it's still not cracking that ten percent still. In the single digits, but. Importantly, the individual. That that that. That sports book opportunity. Brings. In is oftentimes. Traveling, with a group of friends they're. Going over and they're playing and the table games are playing the slots they're eating the restaurants, drinking and the bars, taking. Advantage of the entertainment, and making it you know a real trip out of it you know and like you said you had out to, Vegas during, that, Super. Bowl weekend, or the NCAA, tournament or any of the finals, and and that's, what you see you see large groups, of friends getting back together watch, their favorite sports teams.
And. You, know make it make a weekend, out of it it's, it's a segment all in its own but. If and. I've been to Las Vegas on, and. Will say any given Sunday, it. Doesn't, matter, you'll, see the the. Bars that you have to have a reservation for and, a minimum spend, that's. A that's a gaming bar and the. Reservations, and they're booked you can't even walk up and get it and walk in and so, and, you walk the streets of Las Vegas on, a Sunday, and you'll, see every, NFL jersey, represented. By, the hundreds and thousands it, is a huge draw so it's, it's an incremental segment, it's it's a great segment for Atlantic City to be able to capture, and. I, believe that you, know there's still a lot of legislation, that still has to be worked out things. That they are talking about is they, don't want to see individual. Betting and I might be speaking out of turn but they don't want to they don't want to see people being able to bet on who throws the first who catches the first ball who. Makes the first field goal you, know the the NFL and, NBA and, NHL and, NCAA that they don't want, all that individual, stuff that is out there you, know if you're gonna it's gonna be one loss on the game so there's still much work and still much things to be done legislatively. To. Manage that and, so. I I really think what they're trying to do now is try, to come up with a one. Law, for the United States so, that each individual, state doesn't have different. Rules and regulations when it comes to sports gaming so I think there's still more to learn there's. Still more legislation, and, more governance that's going to take place before this, really takes. Off for anybody I'm. Gonna open it up to the audience for questions. For. The panel, hello. Earl Harvey AC times newspaper a Diane. On the last couple years you have had during. Your presentation. You've, mentioned how you want the southern Cape May County and, Atlantic, County and some of the other counties, to start doing more cooperative. Marketing or cooperative, regional, types. Of promotions, now, that we've lost to do AC campaign. Have you had any discussions with Atlantic County or any of the other counties, about how you all can combine your marketing, budgets for better better reach, yes. Actually we did work with the Atlantic City. Economic. Development Group. And, we worked for a year with them we are doing more of an awareness campaign that, you know this is a large destination. And has so much to offer the visitor, we. Were doing. More of the coop advertising, we do co-op with Cumberland, County Atlanta County and Cape May County and, we're seeing that movement. Continue you. Know we need our visitors to know that there's a lot more to do and a reason. To come and stay longer so that benefits. All of us yes so we are continuing to work with them and last year we had a real campaign, that we were marketing. As a full. Destination. Through, our DMO and, you. Know new jersey southern shore and we included Atlantic, Cape May in Cumberland, County we, always ask in our surveys, how many visitors you know did you go to Atlantic, County or Atlantic City especially, because of the gaming, in the entertainment and we find, 11 percent our visitors do go there they do go to Atlantic, County we, know that you know those who are interested. In the wineries, and the breweries are certainly moving, around, the three counties also, the ecotourism, so, that's where we started, like you know we're you're, you're coming a long distance you're traveling you know when I reach three hours 300, miles and while they're here let's move them around so, when we're out marketing at travel shows especially.
When We're a team you know Canada or Cincinnati, you, know people are the further they drive the longer they stay and, we need to fill their days so they stay, and have something to do people, aren't necessarily only, about beaches that might be the draw and, the hook that gets them here but they're looking for other things to do and the only the best way we can do that is to open up this whole region as a destination, that you, know easy drive to a lot of to experience, a lot of different things were to enhance the experience that it came for kind. Of fun following, up on that timing, issue in sports betting. Isn't. It likely. That, the real big winners at least in the first few, months will, be Monmouth, Park and the. Meadowlands. They. Seem ready to really get into it big time the. Money's there in both locations and, if. They are successful in getting sports betting implemented. Very quickly, they. Will begin. To advance an argument, within. Their own framework. Of now. That we have sports betting why. Don't we also try, to lobby the state to get some slot. Machines here, at these two racetracks, in order, to make it a more. Full-body. Gaming, experience, so. Is that, something that our local, casino industry has really thought through and, shouldn't. That motivate, them to get into this as quickly as they can. My. Thought is we're absolutely in, unchartered, waters right, now right so, but. To Brian's, point and, there's. It's. Not a big revenue producer, but it, can drive overnight. States I can drive weekend, stays of 10 20, people. Coming down at a time so where. Is the the gaming. Revenue on the sports is, a piece, of that. Meadowlands. Might not be positioned, stay, overnight and have spa. Spa. Treatments, and restaurants, and everything it's a piece of the overall experience and in my opinion the. Other thing I would add is you know Tony a hundred percent right to the extent, to which we. Can get to the table quicker, then, our neighboring. States in particular, you, know I think that you, know that stands, to really position New, Jersey, to. Establish, itself, in the arena, of sports gaming on the East Coast, and. In, you, know gather, a name for itself maybe work with some of the partners that are involved in the industry a little bit better try and convince them you, know that New Jersey is the place where they should set up operations for.
The East Coast you know all of that kind of you, know plays. On itself and and I you know I think to the extent to which we. We can be their first mover I think, you know really go a long way hi, this is actually a question I guess specifically, for Atlantic City what's being done to promote, the, pedestrian, experience from, one new, attraction, to the next new attraction, since. We. Don't really have a. Leisure. Effort. In Atlantic. City right now because there's no funding, for that that. Is a challenge for us yeah. Right. Now what we do is we're certainly pursuing. The group market, in that and, the people coming in for conventions, and that nature for. For more on the leisure side. There. Isn't much you know unless we talk a little bit about the ambassadors, that work the boardwalk. And work some of the streets that are available out there from. The special Improvement District, and all that outside. Of that that's that's about all that we have right now that exists, that's, helping, people navigate that, we. Still see most people find the boardwalk and and they're either at the walk or or. On, the boardwalk and in a dust slide some of the other attractions there, there's no question that we just don't have the manpower on. The streets right now to. Help aid that more than what we would like to. Just. Add to that a little bit there so there's. A couple, of things that are occurring, at a very, micro-level scale. In Atlantic's today that are kind of exciting, the little water distillery. Opened up last year there's a few things going on in Tennessee, Avenue which is you. Know a very challenging block, but you know I was down there on a graduation. Day one with some of my colleagues who had made the Atlantic, City they makes their own chocolates. As a, little bar and, an adult, chocolate milk which was really good I understand. There's a beer garden going. In there later, this year and a couple other exciting, things so you, know I think 48. Blocks yeah, I, think I think what you're gonna find is, that you, know with the reinvestment. Of these large corporations, in, Atlantic, City. You're. Gonna see some entrepreneurs, that are breaking, out and you know trying to make it on their own and. To the extent to which they do and, they are successful to, the extent to which Tennessee, Avenue. Was a success. You. Know that's great it's, it's gonna add to the experience, it's gonna give folks a reason to come back and you know really, improve. The destination, I think that's great and the best thing that we can do that we offer is we do have a visitor center at Boardwalk Hall and when. Individuals do come to the, visitors center they're, able to share, with folks and connect the dots of what you just mentioned in terms, of those attractions and then the visitor center that is right on the expressway, for, those who still stop and go there those, are probably the the. Points where individuals. Who are, new to Atlantic City and want to kind. Of get. Out and see different sights those. Are the best places for our visitors to go to at this time thank, you a big. Hand for the panel folks and thank you Tony.