The Snowmobiling Industry in Minnesota
The family winter recreation of snowmobiling has experienced remarkable growth in Minnesota since the 1990s. The following facts provide background on the Minnesota snowmobiling industry.
·There are approximately 220,000 snowmobiles registered in Minnesota.
·All four snowmobile manufacturers have a strong presence in the state of Minnesota. Two of the manufacturers, Arctic Cat and Polaris, started in Minnesota and are based here.
·Since Youth Snowmobile Safety Training began in 1969 by the DNR, more than 450,000 young people have completed the training program. Last year alone, 9,380 people in the state of Minnesota received their safety certification. As of October 2002, any resident born after December 31, 1976, must receive their snowmobile safety certification to ride legally.
·There are 1,000 active certified snowmobile training instructors in the state, many of whom are MnUSA members.
·The economic impact of snowmobiling in Minnesota alone is an estimated $1 billion each year.
·The state’s snowmobiling fund, which is generated through snowmobile registration fees, trail stickers and unrefunded gas tax, pays for the maintenance of approximately 22,000 miles of Minnesota trails.
·Snowmobiling in Minnesota provides over 7,000 jobs in tourism, manufacturing and retail activity, generates annual state and local tax revenue of $51.7 million and contributes $501 million to the Gross State Product according to an economic impact study completed by the University of Minnesota Tourism Center in 2005.
·The average snowmobiler spends $4,000 each year on snowmobile related recreation according to a recent survey done by the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association.
·In 2013-2014, MnUSA snowmobilers raised $167,130 for the Special Olympics and $760,000 for ALS-Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
·In 2013-2014, MnUSA snowmobilers raised in excess of $1.14 million for charities. Hours spent by volunteers teaching snowmobile safety training last season exceeded 10,000 hours.