Santa Cruz Good Times

Friday
Aug 28th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

A Lesson in ‘Durbinomics’

durbin_dayDurbin Day’s economic impact
Durbin Day wasn’t just about celebrating 22-year-old American Idol contestant James Durbin’s return to Santa Cruz—from the city’s perspective, it also meant dollar signs, increased hotel occupancy (which has been low in the last several years), and increased “buzz” about Santa Cruz.

Kris Reyes, community relations director for the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, where the May 14 event was held, tells GT that Durbin Day boosted the Boardwalk’s sales, but adds that the event’s impact will be more far-reaching than that.

 

"James Durbin’s return to Santa Cruz and performance at the Boardwalk turned what would have been an OK Saturday in May into a 'good day' in terms of sales,” Reyes says. “But the true economic impact will be felt in the long-term, as this was another amazing opportunity to showcase Santa Cruz and the Boardwalk as one of the premiere destinations to visit in California."

The event, which gathered an estimated 30,000 people, also helped spike hotel occupancy levels during what is known to be a lull between spring breaks and Memorial Day weekend. The Santa Cruz County Conference & Visitors Council (CVC) reports that hotels occupancy was at, or near to, capacity the weekend of Durbin Day. They also report that it generated an estimated $1 million in visitor spending.

There was initial speculation that the planned homecoming, which is a tradition for American Idol contestants who reach the top three, would be canceled following Durbin's May 12 elimination from the competition; however Durbin was able to return to Santa Cruz—a first in the show's history. The Boardwalk reports that show producers have asked for footage of the Durbin Day celebration and may feature it in the May 18 episode of Idol, which will show the homecomings of this year's top three singers still in the competition.

The event, a collaborative effort between the City of Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Santa Cruz County CVC, the Downtown Santa Cruz Association and Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce, featured a concert with The White Album Ensemble beginning at 4 p.m., joined by Durbin at 5 p.m. Santa Cruz City Mayor Ryan Coonerty was present to honor Durbin for his achievements on American Idol.

Durbin, who was diagnosed as a child with Tourette's and Asperger's syndrome, has been a source of inspiration for many across the country. In addition to the concert, Durbin took time to visit Downtown Santa Cruz, speaking at the Louden Nelson Center and visiting the Teen Center to address groups of Santa Cruz youth, sign autographs and answer questions.

See Durbin Day photos and videos >

Comments (1)Add Comment
...
written by Adele E. Talmadge, May 22, 2011
I think that Santa Cruz had a "blink" moment where it knew that lobbying to American Idol for James' homecoming was the right thing to do. To see the City of Santa Cruz, Convention and Visitors Council, Downtown Association, the Boardwalk and the Santa Cruz Area Chamber of Commerce come together and work as one sends the message that when we work together for the economic good of the community we can accomplish great things. Not having time to debate and over think all of the ramifications was a true blessing - we just got it done. Santa Cruz County has much to offer from the mountains to the sea, clean air, perfect climate and unparalleled beauty. I'm so proud of James and my hometown - we rock!

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

The Meaning of ‘LIFE’

With a new documentary film about his work, and huge exhibits on both coasts, acclaimed Santa Cruz nature photographer Frans Lanting is having a landmark year. But his crusade for conservation doesn’t leave much time for looking back

 

Seasons of Opportunity

Everything in our world has a specific time (a season) in which to accomplish a specific work—a “season” that begins (opportunity) and ends (time’s up). I can feel the season is changing. The leaves turning colors, the air cooler, sunbeams casting shadows in different places. It feels like a seasonal change has begun in the northern hemisphere. Christmas is in four months, and 2015 is swiftly speeding by. Soon it will be autumn and time for the many Festivals of Light. Each season offers new opportunities. Then the season ends and new seasons take its place. Humanity, too, is given “seasons” of opportunity. We are in one of those opportunities now, to bring something new (Uranus) into our world, especially in the United States. Times of opportunity can be seen in the astrology chart. In the U.S. chart, Uranus (change) joins Chiron (wound/healing). This symbolizes a need to heal the wounds of humanity. Uranus offers new archetypes, new ways of doing things. The Uranus/Chiron (Aries/Pisces) message is, “The people of the U.S. are suffering. New actions are needed to bring healing and well-being to humanity. So the U.S. can fulfill its spiritual task of standing within the light and leading humanity within and toward the light.” Thursday, Aquarius Moon, Mercury enters Libra. The message, “To bring forth the new order in the world, begin with acts of Goodwill.” Goodwill produces right relations with everyone and everything. The result is a world of progressive well-being and peacefulness (which is neither passive nor the opposite of war). Saturday is the full moon, the solar light of Virgo streaming into the Earth. Our waiting now begins, for the birth of new light at winter solstice. The mother (hiding the light of the soul, the holy child), identifying the feminine principle, says, “I am the mother and the child. I, God (Father), I Matter (Mother), We are One.”

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

His Dinner With David

Author + reporter = brainy talk in ‘End of the Tour’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Land of Plenty

Farm to Fork benefit dinner for UCSC’s Agroecology Center, plus a zippy salsa from Teresa’s Salsa that loves every food it meets

 

If you knew you had one week to live, what would you do?

Make peace with myself, which would allow me to be at peace with others. Diane Fisher, Santa Cruz, Network Engineer

 

Comanche Cellars

Michael Simons, owner and winemaker of Comanche Cellars, once had a trusted steed called Comanche, which was part of his paper route and his rodeo circuit, from the tender age of 10. In memory of this beautiful horse, he named his winery Comanche, and Comanche’s shoes grace the label of each handcrafted bottle.

 

Cantine Winepub

Aptos wine and tapas spot keeps it casual