American Queen Riverboat visits Hannibal, boosts business - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

American Queen Riverboat visits Hannibal, boosts business

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HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) -

A very famous riverboat is making its way back to the Tri-States.

The American Queen Riverboat docks in Hannibal at 8am and will leave America's hometown around noon on Friday.

Hannibal Tourism officials say every time the riverboat visits Hannibal, business gets a boost.

Gail Bryant, the Director of the Hannibal Visitor and Convention Bureau, says during the fall and winter months, tourism numbers aren't the highest.

That's why she says the American Queen couldn't have come at a better time.

Bryant says The American Queen brings in about 450 passengers from all around the country, and that's a welcome boost at the end of the city's peak tourism season.

She says overall, summer tourism numbers saw a 4% increase from last year, due in large part to the American Queen.

"The feedback that we get from passengers is that they just do not have enough time in Hannibal. So what we're also seeing is that some of the passengers who are somewhat in driving distance to Hannibal have come back to visit us, so it is great for Hannibal," said Bryant.

Steve Ayers, the owner of Ayer's Pottery in Hannibal agrees with Bryant.

"Business off the boat is great! The people are getting off the boat and into the stores much better this year than they ever have before, they've changed their way of doing on shore excursions, and it's really really been positive," said Ayers.

Bryant says to keep tourism numbers up in the fall and winter months, many businesses are staying open year round.

Bryant says the city will be holding special events all fall and winter long as well.

The American Queen will leave Hannibal Friday at noon. The riverboat will be back in Hannibal on Monday October 14, 2013 from 8am-noon, and again Friday October 25, 2013 from 8am-noon.

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