Walker College student Matthew Drake recently attended the state's Undergraduate Research and Creativity Symposium in High Point, NC. Drake, a senior majoring in Economics and Mathematics at Appalachian State University, presented his research to conference participants on Nov. 15.
Drake's research focused on the Economic Impact of the 2015 High Country Beer Fest. He partnered with event coordinators to solicit information via online survey to attendees who purchased their tickets online. The survey asked about spending habits during the event, both at the festival and in the surrounding area.
In 2014, 55% of survey respondents lived outside Watauga County and 73% of those individuals stayed overnight in the area. The average total spending of respondents was $264 during their stay in the high country. Using the average and a multiplier tool, the estimated total economic impact of the High Country Beer Festival was $130,000.
Economics Professor John Whitehead mentored Drake.
The conference was hosted by High Point University.
The High Country Beer Fest is a non-profit event benefiting ASU Fermentation Sciences, and in 2015, also supports High Country Local First, High Country Mommies, Blue Ridge Conservancy-Middle Fork Greenway Association, The Mountain Alliance, and Ivory Tower, Inc.