APPLETON - Over the past 10 years there have been more than 1,400 performances at the PAC and 1.8 million tickets have been sold.
"The PAC has really exceeded any of the expectations that were out there," said executive vice president Maria Van Laanen.
It all translates into big money the tune of $178 million over that ten year span. Not just for the PAC, but local businesses as well.
"It has absolutely been a catalyst for new businesses, for new shopping, for a new audience to our district and that is good for everybody," said Jennifer Stephany, executive director of Appleton Downtown, Inc.
Since the PAC opened in 2002, the face of downtown Appleton has changed With the Performing Arts Center drawing from local businesses and local businesses succeeding because of the PAC.
"Oh yes, especially during the week, during the week we are 30-40 percent busier when they have shows," said Chris Victoria, owner of Victoria's restaurant on College Avenue.
And it's not just restaurants but shops and hotels both in downtown Appleton and beyond.
"All of these artists and the crews they travel with they need to stay in hotels, they need to be fed and then there are all of those ancillary expenses that are being spent in our communities as well," said Van Laanen.
According to a survey by the group Americans for the Arts, people spend an average of $19.45 before heading to a performance at the PAC. The study shows tourists to the area attending shows at the PAC spend almost twice that much.
"We really have developed an arts and culture district and that stems from the impact that the Performing Arts Center and the Trout Museum of Art have had on our district, so to have that as a centerpiece to build off from has made all the difference for us," said Stephany.
And with it a partnership Victoria says works for everyone.
"We are good for them and they are good for us, but they are more good for us."
The Americans for the Arts study shows that the economic spending associated with the PAC also helps support 430 full-time jobs.
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