Atlantic City Mayor Disses Popular Miss America Investment

atlantic city don guardian miss america
Mayor Considers Miss A, Wasteful Spending?

Did Atlantic City’s biggest cheerleader just diss the newly revived Miss America Pageant? Maybe pressure from the looming Nov 3 deadline pushed Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian to misspeak. Guardian recently told Bloomberg News that investing in the annual event was a waste of casino generated funds.

According to / Bloomberg report, investments in the newly refreshed Miss America Pageant don’t seem to be paying off. Huh? How did they reach that half-baked conclusion? Oh, here’s how they did it: analysts used small sliver of financial data from 2012 to 2015. They honed in on just 2 numbers….. luxury tax and casino parking revenues. WTF? Miss America is responsible for making more visitors pay for over-priced casino parking? Really.

The marketing professionals at ACprimetime scoff at monitoring such a small cross-section of data. Instead, we need to track a wider range of metrics.

  • Brand & message awareness
  • Growth of visotor database and marketing/tourism data
  • Shovels in the ground
  • Hotel openings
  • Job creation
  • Private developer investments from folks like Blatstein / Straub
  • Boardwalk & tourism district headcount
  • Bar / restaurant revenue
  • Mid and long-term recall

Our ACprimetime 2 cents: The story seems like spin to us. That North Jersey newspaper loves to cast a negative light on AC. Ask yourself this: will investments in the new inlet Boardwalk, Tanger Outlets and Stockton Gateway project be subject to the same faulty scrutiny? Will the Gateway project and new Boardwalk be held responsible for boosting luxury tax & casino parking numbers? 

Don Guardian, Mayor of Atlantic City: the pageant is not worth $12 million-plus price tag.

The affable, bow-tied leader of Atlantic City seems to be in the minority here. But hey, we’ll give Don a pass. The ticking clock of a state takeover and the 2017 Atlantic City mayoral election could certainly be weighing on his judgement. As one of AC’s biggest cheerleaders; Mayor Don claims the Miss America Pageant is not worth the $4 million annual investment. “The state is the epitome of wasteful spending,” Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian said.

Highly respected dick clark productions would disagree with Mayor Don’s assessment. Just look at the results in year #1 of the 3 year deal between CRDA & DCP:

  • “It’s the Super Bowl for Atlantic City,” said Atlantic City Alliance, in charge of enhancing the city’s reputation.
  • Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno: “A boost of morale to the state of New Jersey, something you could not put a price tag on”
  • CRDA chief John Palmieri told Bloomberg News that Miss America was “an important brand” that brings a national TV audience to the city.

Press of Atlantic City: One stipulation of the new deal is that Dick Clark Productions, which oversaw marketing of the 2016 pageant last September, will have to promote Atlantic City during its other productions — the Billboard Music Awards and New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, the report says, adding that not everyone on the CRDA board was in favor of the deal. Those voting against the contract included Mark Giannantonio, CEO of Resort Casino Hotel and Howard Kyle, Atlantic County chief of staff. 

Last year, the 2016 MISS AMERICA PAGEANT telecast had massive TV competition. Nonetheless…

  • TV ratings UP by almost 1 million viewers.
  • Miss A gained 31% in Adults 18-49…. from first half-hour to final half-hour (prime target for AC)
  • Total Viewers and Adults 18-49, the 2016 Miss America Competition delivered 4-month highs for ABC in that time slot.

The Miss America Pageant Broadcast:

  • #1 on Nielsen’s Twitter TV Ratings
  • Grew Men 18-34 viewership by 29%
  • Grew Women viewership 25-54 by 5%
  • Grew Teen viewership 12-17 by 43%
  • The Miss America Competition drew 7.9 million viewers

Did you know? This year in Atlantic City, Miss Missouri; Erin O’Flaherty, has a chance to become the first openly gay Miss America.

The Miss America pageant airs live from Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall on Sept. 11, 2016 on ABC-TV. miss-america-organization/