National Extension Tourism (NET): 2021 Conf. Proceedings

of the Fair, main reasons to attend the Fair, group composition, expenditures, mode of transportation, and basic demographic information.

Data collection

For each attendee profile, a sampling plan was created with both spatial and time considerations to: (1) ensure coverage of various activities and areas throughout the Fair, and (2) reach a range of Fair attendees. A convenience sample was used with survey volunteers asking passing attendees to complete the questionnaire. University of Minnesota Tourism Center staff trained and coordinated volunteers who administered the questionnaire. Survey volunteers collected 395 usable responses in 2007, 532 in 2011, 475 in 2014, and 471 in 2017.

Data analysis

Completed questionnaires were entered, cleaned, and checked in SPSS, a statistical data analysis software. Analysis provided frequencies to describe the sample of Fair attendees and to provide descriptive information on variables of interest. Means, medians, and standard deviations were also provided where applicable. Comparison between the 2007, 2011, 2014, and 2017 profile results was conducted using chi-square tests to compare categorical variables and Analysis of Variance to compare means.


Data from the 2007, 2011, 2014, and 2017 profiles were compared where applicable. Analysis revealed differences in select information sources and expenditures, average age, gender, income, and Fair experience. Differences among information sources included Irish community sources, traditional media, and online sources (Table 1). There was a steady and significant decrease in the percentage of respondents who used the Irish Gazette as an information source (  2 =7.51, p <0.05). In 2007, attendees were more likely to use newspaper (  2 =18.29, p <0.0005) and radio (  2 =18.82, p <0.0005), two traditional information sources, than in subsequent years. Respondents in 2017 were significantly more likely than those in earlier years to use Facebook as an information source (  2 =69.90, p <0.0005). Additionally, attendees in 2011 and 2014, compared to those in 2007 and 2017, were more likely to use “other” information sources (  2 =110.17, p <0.0005).

2021 NET Conference Proceedings


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