Press Release –
Year two of the Go Snowmobiling Campaign yielded very positive returns for most of Ontario’s snowmobiling industry this past winter. According to the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC), the economic impact of snowmobiling more than held its own as the snow started early in most areas and lasted into early April in Northern Ontario.
• Permit Sales Up: The first and most tangible measure of Go Snowmobiling’s success is that Full Season Snowmobile Trail Permit sales increased for the second consecutive season to over 90,000, up from 84,600 the previous year and 82,000 in 2007. That’s a 10% increase since the Go Snowmobiling Campaign began.
• Many New Participants: This growth reflects the renewed interest created by Go Snowmobiling, which has attracted many first timers, brought former riders back again, expanded participation within families and encouraged more people to ride in Ontario.
• Building the Next Generation: OFSC Driver Training has graduated 14,500 new, young snowmobilers in the past three seasons, including a 15% increase in its annual tally for this past winter alone, to 5,300. This continuing influx of youth augurs well for building a new generation of snowmobilers and securing the future of Go Snowmobiling.
• Positive Sled Sales: The growing interest from Go Snowmobiling also translated into positive sled sales in many parts of the province last winter. Snowmobile dealers reported good to exceptional results for moving new sleds, while steady activity throughout the used market made good pre-owned sleds very hard to come by.
• Strong Spring for the North: As the focus of snowmobiling shifted north in March and early April, snowmobile-friendly businesses benefited as thousands of Ontarians trailered there to ride, packing lodgings and spending countless dollars in restaurants, gas stations, sled dealers and other local operations.
• Go Snowmobiling Reaches Millions: Almost 100 OFSC media partners delivered the Go Snowmobiling message across Ontario during 2008/09, resulting in a campaign valued at almost $1 Million, with hundreds of thousands exposures and impressions that reached millions of Ontarians, snowmobilers and non-snowmobilers alike.
• $3 Million Improvements: Thanks to the support of the McGuinty Government, OFSC clubs invested $3 million to reduce barriers to snowmobile tourism last season, thereby improving the overall riding experience and encouraging more participation in snowmobile touring.
• Recession Proof? An analysis of OFSC permit results back to the eighties indicates that sales typically hold their own or increase in tough economic times as people look for more escape, stress relief and exciting leisure activities to share with their families and fill their time.
The OFSC looks forward to working with its industry and government partners again in the 2009/2010 season to take the Go Snowmobiling Campaign to the next level.