The success of Manteca’s envisioned 115-acre family entertainment zone (FEZ) that will be book marked by the Great Wolf Lodge and Big League Dreams is likely to depend on how well it caters to the desires of the local and primary market of 2.5 million consumers.
Of those consumers, 900,000 are within a 30-minute drive of the FEZ site along the 120 Bypass that is accessed via Airport Way. The other 1.6 million are within 30 to 60 minutes and reaches as far north as Elk Grove, as far east as Pleasanton, and as far south as Merced.
It is one of the conclusions of a $50,000 study financed by the Manteca Development Group that was conducted by Entertainment+Culture Advisors (ECA) based in Los Angeles and Hong Kong.
The April 2017 report makes note of the secondary market that has an additional 9.5 million consumers within one to two hours and encompasses San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Santa Cruz, Sacramento, Roseville, Yuba City, Napa, Vacaville Fresno and points in between those cities and Manteca.
The FEZ is being discussed tonight when the City Council meets at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.
Developing the FEZ with endeavors such as Dave & Buster’s (a non-gated dining and entertainment concept with mid-way redemption games and high tech video and stimulation attractions) that caters to teens, young adults, and families; SPIN (a Ping-Pong themed restaurant/entertainment center that also has art shows , ballet battles and such) catering to young adults; Lucky Strike (upscale bowling alleys) aimed at young adults and families; and similar ventures are what ECA indicated — based on the primary region’s demographics — would be needed to lure enough consumers to the FEZ to make it work.
Catering to the primary market is considered critical as it is a more solid base for supporting such endeavors during the week plus is much more likely to produce repeat customers.
The secondary market would be infrequent in comparison and would rely significantly on Big League Dreams and Great Wolf patronize as well as snagging tourists heading to and from Yosemite.
Complementing such a family entertainment strategy are family and children’s attractions, family entertainment centers and family amusement parks.
Other opportunities the ECA explored are adventure attractions action sports parks, and participatory sports facilities.
The ECA study notes when the primary and secondary markets are combined with the overnight tourist market based on hotel occupancies from Turlock to Lodi and west to Tracy, there are 15.2 million possible consumers the FEZ could target. The overnight tourist market includes 1.8 million leisure tourists and 1.5 million business tourists.
Attractions in the regional market identified in the ECA study that would be completive to FEZ concept include Boomers! in Modesto and Livermore, Laser Quest and Funworks in Modesto, Umigo Indoor Kart Racing in Livermore, Go Bananas in Lathrop, Pixie Woods Amusement Park and The Haggin Museum in Stockton, and Micke Grove Zoo in Lodi as well as Bass Pro Shops and Big League Dreams.
The biggest draw in terms of annual attendance is BLD at 390,000. Micke Grove Zoo is next at 100,000.
At BLD, 80 percent of the 390,000 attendees are adults and 20 percent are youth from 5 to 14 based on admissions paid. During the week 100 percent of the visitors at BLD are within an hour drive. During weekends, 50 percent drive one to four hours to reach the BLD complex.
The average household income based in 2016 data of those within 30 minutes of the FEZ site is $71,268 while it is $97,009 for consumers 30 to 60 minutes away. That compares to $99,536 in Oakland and $128,985 in San Jose.
The average age within 30 minutes is 33 years while it is 35.8 minutes within 30 to 60 minutes. That compares to 38 years in both Oakland and San Jose.
Of the households with 30 minutes, 45 percent of the households have children while 43 percent have children within 30 to 60 minutes. That compares to 31 percent in Oakland and 36 percent in San Jose.
Households within 60 minutes of the FEZ site plus those in Oakland and San Jose spend 4 percent of their household budget on entertainment and recreation.
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