Saturday, May 19, 2012

Outlook on NASCAR Hall of Fame is Looking Better

Per Thats Racin, As the NASCAR Hall of Fame turned two this month, the racing museum had some rare good news: It has recently seen its attendance stabilize compared with the same months a year earlier.

The hall is still losing money and is far short of original attendance projections. But the better turnstile numbers have hall officials believing they are on the right track.

“There is a series of different things that we have learned have worked,” said executive director Winston Kelley, noting that reduced-price tickets for locals in February and March helped boost attendance.

The hall’s first full year was a slog.

Kelley and the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority projected 800,000 people would attend but only 272,000 came, including 12,000 for a free week in January 2011. The hall lost $1.4 million.

The hall’s second year began poorly. After projecting higher attendance, attendance was down more than 30 percent in the summer of 2011 compared with the same months of the previous year.

But in late 2011, the NASCAR hall’s attendance began to stabilize.

For instance, the hall attracted 16,270 people in March compared with 15,882 a year earlier. February attendance this year was 12,989 compared with 13,091 in 2011.

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