Corrie n. Cody's Travel Blog Dividing image

Look Who’s Coming

January 18th, 2017 by Park County Travel Council | Comments (3)

So one day last summer I was bustin’ a move—part backcountry hiking pace and part Texas Two Step—down Sheridan Avenue when I came upon a dude with a clipboard and smirk.

“What do you call that little dance step, lassie?” he asked.

“First of all, I am no lassie,” I replied. “You may call me Ms. Cody, and if I deem you worthy you may call me Corrie. Second, there is no name for that dance step. It is something that just happens when Dan Miller singing ‘Ghost Riders in the Sky’ gets stuck in my head. Fighting it is like trying to defy gravity.”

“I apologize for being so forward, Ms. Cody,” he said. “I also saw Dan’s show at his new digs in the Buffalo Bill Center of the West last night, and I must say that I hoofed it back to my hotel with the sounds of ‘Happy Trails’ putting a big smile on my face. It was still in my own head as I drifted off to sleep.”

“In that case, apology accepted and please call me Corrie,” I said. “Now, what’s up with the clipboard?”

Well, it turns out that my new friend was conducting a survey on behalf of our very own Park County tourism board to determine who visits our special corner of the world, and why.

While I thought I had a pretty good idea what the results of the survey would be, there are always a few surprises. Here’s what I learned:

The top five states our visitors are coming from are, in order, California, Texas, Colorado, Washington and Minnesota. When a similar study was conducted 11 years ago, Montana and Florida were in the top five while Texas and Minnesota were farther down the list.

Those who flew for a portion of their visit jumped from 27 percent to 37 percent, and Salt Lake City was the most popular airport. The Yellowstone Regional Airport here in Cody accounted for 12 percent of our visitors who flew in.

An exterior view of Yellowstone Regional Airport.

Cody’s Yellowstone Regional Airport saw an increase in traffic. The airport is located just a few minutes from downtown Cody.

There was little change in the activities in which visitors participated with more than 50 percent enjoying wildlife watching, geyser gazing, day hiking and shopping/visiting galleries.

Big Horn Sheep in Cody/Yellowstone Country

Wildlife watching is a popular pastime in Cody. One of the easiest mammals to spot is bighorn sheep, which frequently can be seen climbing the steep rock canyons surrounding the town.

There was a big jump in return visitors. In 2005 some 59 percent of those surveyed had been to Park County before. That number jumped over the 11-year span with more than 80 percent of those surveyed saying this was a repeat visit.

A family strolls along Sheridan Avenue in Cody, Wyoming.

Visitors enjoy strolling along Sheridan Avenue and exploring the town’s abundant shops and galleries.

The number of international guests grew from six percent in 2005 to 10 percent in 2016. England, Germany and France were the top countries visitors call home in both surveys, but those that are most notably increasing are China, Italy and The Netherlands.

Downtown Cody, Wyoming

Numerous languages could be heard last summer among visitors to Cody. The number of international visitors has grown significantly over the years.

As someone who likes to keep her finger on the pulse of tourism around here, I was happy to hear this news. I thought I had heard a few more Italian accents lately.

And while it is always fun to break down the numbers, I love hearing the stories even more and making friends with the people I meet. Even those who aren’t carrying clipboards.

Until next week, I am lovin’ life here in Cody, Wyo.


Jeff Young (January 21, 2017)

Love your town!

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Lillie Mersing (January 22, 2017)

We loved our visit to Cody. We were there in 2008 on July 4th. We were touring the US on a 4 week vacation on our motorcyle. What a hopping town it was. There was music and dancing on the side walk of the Erma Hotel, wonderful food, and friendly crowds. It was Rodeo Week too. So much history and natural beauty there. I would love to move to the area. Hope to at least go back for another visit.

> Reply
theadmin (January 23, 2017)

Thank you so much for your very nice comments! We hope you get to come back and visit us again some day!

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