Springtime Brings Visitors and Sales Tax Revenue to Grapevine’s Retail Scene
29 Mar 2022
Spring is in the air, bringing visitors to the extensive and varied Grapevine, Texas, retail scene. All of those added footsteps bring added tax revenue during the “spring break” season coming to a close at the end of March.
Julia Sizemore, President, Historic Downtown Grapevine Association, said the increase in Downtown foot traffic is noticeable. “March is when warm weather starts and people want to get out. It’s a great time for conventions to be booked at our hotels which translates to visitors and dollars spent in the Historic District. We start to see our robust tourist base emerge in March.”
“The merchants have their spring inventory out, the restaurants spruce up their patios, and everyone is ready to greet and host our locals and visitors from around the world,” Sizemore said.
The numbers gathered from cell data support the observation. Excluding Grapevine’s Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport property, on the last Friday in March 2021, approximately 189,000 people visited Grapevine. That’s just 17 percent fewer visitors than the City saw on Black Friday 2021.
These visitors bring their wallets. In 2021, sales tax revenue between February and March jumped 43 percent. Looking at it another way, sales tax revenue in March 2021 was only 17 percent lower than the preceding December.
While revenue numbers are not in for March 2022, it’s promising to compare sales tax revenue from December 2020 (fiscal year 2021) to December 2021 (fiscal year 2022) which saw a 24 percent increase. All told, approximately $3.7 million was collected in sales tax revenue in December 2021. The increased spending trend seen in FY2022 versus FY2021 bodes well for the historical “spring break” revenue bounce.
“Our residents and businesses have a passion for Grapevine,” Sizemore said. “We are fortunate to have the Grapevine Convention & Visitors Bureau and City Hall right on Main Street. Our Historic District is protected by a Preservation Commission to ensure authenticity to standards set forth for our historical town designation. Collectively, we take an enormous amount of pride in what we have in the Downtown District and work tirelessly to create and maintain an atmosphere of fun worthy of our visitors.”
Adding to the Grapevine’s shopping appeal is Grapevine Mills. Set just inside the northeastern border of Grapevine, the mall reigns in the top 1 percent of U.S. malls for foot traffic. Placer.ai ranks it as a top-10 mall for unique visitors within a 50-mile radius. Up to 20 percent of visitors come from beyond that radius, traveling from Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana as well as just about every corner of Texas.
Part of the appeal of Grapevine Mills has been its diversification as an entertainment destination, a plus for busy parents during spring break. Venues include Legoland Discovery Center, Sea Life Grapevine Aquarium, Round One Entertainment, Fieldhouse USA, and Peppa Pig World of Play.
Grapevine is just getting revved up for 2022. “The Historic District stays pretty busy throughout the remainder of the year,” Sizemore said. “Because we are a wine town, we have our annual New Vintage Wine & Gallery Trail and the Blessing of the Vines event on April 9. This year, our annual craft brew festival, Main Street Fest, is May 20, 21, and 22. Both of these events showcase Historic Downtown and all we have to offer our visitors and residents.”
The remainder of the year stays busy and entertaining. The fall season of fun is kicked off with Grapevine’s highly anticipated annual GrapeFest — the largest wine festival in the Southwest — September 15–18, 2022. The year culminates with the elaborate Christmas Capital of Texas festivities in November and December.
“I meet people every day visiting Grapevine for the first time and they always comment on what a great time they are having Downtown,” Sizemore said.