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Despite the obvious influence of weather conditions on golfing activity, the relationships between participation in golf and specific weather variations have rarely been considered in the empirical literature. Given the increasing evidence to support global climate change, quantification of historical relationships between participation and weather conditions is a vital prerequisite to modeling the potential implications of changing weather patterns for participation in outdoor activities such as golf. The purpose of this article was to determine the influence of weather variations on daily golfing activity at three golf courses in Michigan. Multiple regression analysis revealed that variations in maximum temperature and precipitation had statistically significant influences on daily golfing activity in all the models developed. Fluctuations in other variables, including minimum temperature, public holidays, consumer confidence, and the price of gas, also emerged as significant, but not consistently so across all the models. The results presented highlight both the problems and opportunities associated with modeling the relationships between outdoor activity participation and weather conditions. While the models constructed do identify interesting relationships between the variables tested, they also illuminate the difficulties in accounting for the myriad of influences on outdoor activity participation in a quantitative setting. Nevertheless, the analyses should be of immense utility to outdoor recreation and tourism planners and managers for both the short- and long-term planning and management of their enterprises. Models of present-day relationships between activity participation and variability in climatic, economic, and other relevant factors could aid in short-term decisions regarding issues such as purchasing and staffing requirements. When combined with scenarios of future climatic, economic, and other conditions, they could also be used to inform choices regarding the expansion of existing facilities and diversification into new geographic and/or activity domains.
The aim of Tourism Analysis is to promote a forum for practitioners and academicians in the fields of Leisure, Recreation, Tourism, and Hospitality (LRTH). As a interdisciplinary journal, it is an appropriate outlet for articles, research notes, and computer software packages designed to be of interest, concern, and of applied value to its audience of professionals, scholars, and students of LRTH programs the world over.