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Graduation to bring economic surge

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Students walking under the arches of the Undergraduate Academic Center.
Photo by: Lara Dietrich | Multimedia Editor
Students walking under the arches of the Undergraduate Academic Center on May 28.

Local businesses are eager to enjoy the economic boost visiting families bring with them as commencement weekend approaches.

Many graduates show their families around town and bring them to their favorite bars and restaurants after graduation. For Devin Lopez, general manager of The Porch on Hopkins, those families turn into customers

“We at least get a 20-to-40 percent increase in sales in just that Thursday (through) Saturday,” Lopez said. “Kids like to show their parents their favorite bar and where they spend most of their time. Graduation has a big impact for San Marcos as a whole.”

The restaurants and bars will not be the only ones with an uptick in business. Rebecca Ybarra-Ramirez, the director of the San Marcos Convention and Visitor Bureau, said she expects to see nearly $1 million in hotel revenue over graduation weekend. The city of San Marcos will see nine percent of this revenue through the hotel occupancy tax.

“As of today, we have 2,485 hotel rooms in the city of San Marcos,” Ybarra-Ramirez said. “In past years our hotels have all sold out.”

Fairfield Inn and Suites sees a large influx of guests during graduation weekend, being one of the closest and most accessible hotels to Aquarena Springs Drive. Ally Harkrider, the director of sales for Fairfield Inn and Suites, believes graduation is a great weekend for the city of San Marcos.

“We’re only about a mile and a half away from the university and one of the easiest to get to-and-from Aquarena,” Harkrider said. “December graduation doesn’t quite sell us out, but it gets us pretty close. May is guaranteed a city-wide sell-out.”

For more information on available hotel rooms and attractions in San Marcos, visit the San Marcos Convention and Visitor Bureau website.

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