Southern Arizona parks have big economic impact

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The National Park Service says three southern Arizona attractions drew nearly 200,000 visitors last year who spent $11.4 million in the communities near the park.

The park service says that Coronado National Memorial, Chiricahua National Monument and Fort Bowie National Historic Site, all of which fall under the National Park system, benefit the local economies.

A spending analysis found that in general, national parks around the country result in $18.4 billion in direct spending by the 331 million people who visit them.

Visitors spend the most money on lodging, food and drink and gasoline.

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