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Oxford seeing tourism boom

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    Friday, October 4 2013 3:43 PM EDT2013-10-04 19:43:45 GMT
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OXFORD, Miss. (FOX13) -

If you are looking to get a hotel room in Oxford for an event, you might have to book ahead of time. The town is seeing big tourism numbers and more people are spending time in the shadows of Ole Miss.

The attractions are many in Oxford these days and it is boosting the hotel business.

Hotel occupancy is way up in Oxford in 2013 versus 2012. In some cases as much as 50-percent. Tourism officials said they don't know exactly why but they're happy.

"The numbers we have for August which is the most recent data, we have shown there was about a 50-percent increase in our hotel occupancy to that year prior, so that's a pretty significant jump for a town this size," said Mary Herrington, of Visit Oxford.

Oxford has about 900 hotel rooms. The hotels have averaged about a 40-percent increase in business so far this year across the board month to month.

"There are a variety of things that draw people here," Herrington said. "Obviously the university is a huge draw. The literary heritage with William Faulkner. So many other writers that have followed in his footsteps like John Grisham  and Barry Hannah bring a lot of people to town as well. But just the great shopping, and dining, and sort of small town life bring a lot of folks."

Hotel business has only dropped off one month this year.

"We've seen an increase every month except for August, and it was only down by a fraction of a percent," Herrington said. "So, we are definitely seeing things are on the rise."

Hotel business so good in Oxford that Herrington said at least three new hotels are being built in the city this year to meet the need.

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