Amusement and Recreation Services, NEC

SIC 7999

Companies in this industry

Industry report:

This industry covers establishments primarily engaged in the operation of sports, amusement, and recreation services, not elsewhere classified, such as bathing beaches, swimming pools, lottery operations, riding academies and schools, gaming establishments, carnival operations, exposition operations, horse shows, picnic grounds operation, ski resorts, and shooting galleries. Establishments primarily engaged in showing or handling animals at shows or exhibitions are classified in SIC 0752: Animal Specialty Services, Except Veterinary.

Americans entertain themselves with a broad spectrum of amusements and recreations that include participatory and spectator sports, tourism, and other activities. Members of this broad industry range from athletes to bowling instructors and from fortune tellers to fireworks operators. The U.S. population's traditional interest in a rich and varied range of recreational activities has supported the growth of an enormous, sprawling industry to capitalize on the continued popularity of such activities.

Spending on recreational activities has grown dramatically since 1990, even in the absence of more free time. Entertainment spending was dramatically higher in affluent and well-educated households. In addition, while this industry classification covers many establishments, several areas of the industry continued to have particular economic significance in the United States in the early twenty-first century.

Ski Resorts.
Skiing is one of America's favorite recreational sports, but in the late 1990s the number of skiers leveled off and operational costs such as snowmaking and workers' compensation rose, causing resorts to hike prices and even explore consolidation opportunities. Many younger outdoor enthusiasts took up snowboarding, further contributing to the downhill skiing slump. In the late 1990s, flashy new ski designs were introduced to appeal to skiers over 35, who made up an increasing share of the market. The new skis claimed to allow ordinary skiers to cut smooth turns at slow speeds and with little effort.

Vail Resorts Inc., the nation's largest ski resort operator, owned five of the nation's most popular ski resorts in 2010: Beaver Creek, Breckenridge Mountain Resort, Keystone Resort, and Vail Mountain in Colorado and Heavenly Mountain Resort in the Lake Tahoe area on the California/Nevada border. In addition, the company owned or managed about 20 other resorts and operated six resort golf courses. With 16,000 employees, Vail Resorts registered revenues of more than $868 million in 2009.

One of the challenges for the ski resort industry in 2010 was the threat of global warming, which could reduce the amount of snow needed for businesses to thrive. In reaction, industry participants created such organizations as the Sustainable Slopes project, the Keep Winter Cool campaign, and the Save Our Snow action plan in order to cut greenhouse emissions.

The tourism industry includes such items as air, bus, cruise ship, and rail travel; hotel and motel accommodations; camping; food and drink; retail purchases; and amusement and recreation service. Across the United States, cities and counties have found success by using tourism to attract industry. The tourism industry ranks among the top three employers in a majority of the 50 states. Travel spending in the United States is responsible for millions of jobs generating hundreds of billions of dollars in wages and salaries.

As concern for the environment has grown, the so-called "eco-trip" or adventure travel, has become a popular vacation alternative. These eco-tours, which include such excursions as white water rafting, watching sea lions, or visiting a rain forest, are not new, but they have become a growth area of the travel industry.

Gaming Establishments.
Until the late 1980s, only Nevada and New Jersey permitted casinos. But with states and localities hard-pressed to generate jobs, tourism, and tax dollars, the gaming industry has increasingly been viewed as a vehicle for economic growth. By the late 2000s, some form of legal gambling was available in 48 states and the District of Columbia. According to the American Gaming Association, gaming generated more than $30 billion in revenues in 2009, which represented a slight decrease from 2008 due to the economic recession.

Based on revenue, Las Vegas and Atlantic City remained the two largest centers of the U.S. casino market. In 2009, Las Vegas had more than $5.5 billion in revenues from gaming. Atlantic City reported $3.9 million. In contrast to Las Vegas, which is more of a resort and business convention destination, about 30 percent of the visitors to Atlantic City arrive by charter bus and stay for less than a full day. Many of Atlantic City's gaming facilities are located on or near the Boardwalk.

During the early 1990s, casino-type activity become increasingly accessible to U.S. consumers. The geographic expansion of legalized gaming broadened the industry's customer base. People who had never traveled to Las Vegas or Atlantic City were being lured to local riverboats or Native American casinos. By 1996, there were approximately 65 riverboat casinos open in Iowa, Illinois, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, and Indiana. In addition, a number of states had authorized video gaming terminals (VGTs), which resembled slot machines.

The 1990s also witnessed the expansion of Native American gaming facilities. Under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act of 1988 (IGRA), Native Americans can operate whatever form of gambling legally exists in a given state. Typically, a tribe seeks an agreement, or compact, with the state, detailing the gambling activity for which it seeks approval. By 2010, 28 states permitted Native American gaming sites.

As the twentieth century neared a close, there was a slowdown in the number of new jurisdictions adopting legalized gambling. Concerns about social and moral issues restricted the spread of legalized gambling. In 1996 Congress established the Gaming Impact and Policy Commission to study the effects of the industry on the public. The Commission found that while the gambling industry has entertained and provided decent jobs for some, it does have significant problems. The main problems cited were the effect on those with a pathological gambling problem and their families, and the fact that in many cases, the revenues from gambling that were supposed to go into causes like education or the environment have simply not gone there. The Commission recommended that a "pause" was necessary before further legalization of gambling was allowed.

With the advent of the Internet, the online gambling sector experienced explosive growth. In 2009, the American Gaming Association estimated there were more than 2,000 Internet gambling websites generating $5.4 billion in revenues from U.S. participants and $25.8 billion from players worldwide. Several states, however, including Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, South Dakota, and Utah all had legislation banning Internet gambling within their borders.

Industry Leaders

In 2010 Harrah's Entertainment was the largest gaming company in the world, with 50 casinos in the United States and United Kingdom, including Harrah's, Bally's, Caesars, Horseshoe, Rio, and Planet Hollywood. Harrah's gained its position in the industry when it purchased former rival Caesars Entertainment in 2005 for $9.4 billion. As of 2009, Harrah's employed 70,000 people and generated more than $8.9 billion in annual revenues.

MGM Resorts International (formerly MGM MIRAGE) was another industry leader, with properties such as the MGM Grand, Luxor, Bellagio, The Mirage, and the Monte Carlo, all in Las Vegas, as well as several others around the country and in China and Dubai. MGM Resorts International , which purchased Mandalay Resort Group in 2005, registered sales of more than $5.9 billion and employed 62,000 people in 2009

The largest casino in the United States in 2010 was the Foxwoods Resort Casino, owned by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation in Connecticut. The Foxwoods complex, which included six casinos and the world's largest Bingo hall, covered approximately 4.7 million square feet, with 340,000 square feet of gaming space and 7,000 slot machines. According to Hartford, more than 40,000 people a day visited Foxwoods.

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News and information about Amusement and Recreation Services, NEC

BLS Establishment Estimates Revised to Incorporate March 1998 Benchmarks.(United States Bureau of Labor Statistics)(Statistical Data Included)
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...percent) in the service-producing sector...Automotive dealers and service stations 2,301...brokers, and service 739 736 Real estate 1,419 1,411 Services(2) 36,862 575 567 Amusement and recreation services 1,437...008 Services, nec 50 51 Government...
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...Auto repair, services, and parki 10...Miscellaneous repair services -3 -1 1 2...3 -6 -2.4 Amusement and recreation service -25 9 -11 5 -0.3 Health services 32 21 24 30 2...7 Services, nec na na na na na...

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