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Beacom School of Business Documents Impact of Great Bear Recreation Park

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- Two professors from the University of South Dakota’s Beacom School of Business released the results this week of a study they conducted that found the Great Bear Recreation Park provides more than $3.1 million in economic impact to the Sioux Falls area annually.

The analysis, conducted by Rand Wergin, Ph.D., and Richard Muller, details how visitors spend money at the park and how their spending flows through businesses in the area. It also serves as a benchmark for tracking future economic data and the park’s impact on the region. The study was based on research originally done by the State of New York on the economic impact of ski areas to local economies.

“The Beacom School of Business is committed to serving the local economy and the region through such studies, which promote economic development,” said Venky Venkatachalam, dean of the Beacom School of Business. “We are proud that our faculty are able to make significant contributions to this project to assist Great Bear Recreation Park.”

“This information will be instrumental in helping us fine-tune our long-range strategic plan,” said Greg Blomberg, Great Bear Board member.

Great Bear Recreation Park is a unique 220-acre green space located along a glacial moraine in northeast Sioux Falls. The park is owned by the City of Sioux Falls Parks and Recreation Department and managed by a private, 10-member volunteer board. The park is a summer destination for hiking nature trails, running, weddings and meetings, as well as downhill skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snow tubing and snowshoeing in the winter.


USD's Beacom School of Business was established in 1927 and has been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) since 1949. The leading business school in the region, Beacom’s programs are consistently ranked among the top business schools in the nation by Princeton Review, U.S. News & World Report and others for its high-quality learning experience, student success, affordability, and high-caliber of faculty and students. Whether a student chooses face-to-face or online courses, Beacom’s programs emphasize real-world experience through professional organizations, quality internships and capstone projects.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News