Taking tourism on the road.…

Posted March 14, 2009 at 2:13 pm by

The Vis­i­tors’ Bureau here in the islands is pret­ty active when it comes to spread­ing the word.…last week they were in Olympia vis­it­ing with our new­ly-mint­ed state sen­a­tor Kevin. Here’s more from Robin:

On March 9, Deb­o­rah Hop­kins and Robin Jacob­son of the San Juan Islands Vis­i­tors Bureau, as well as Car­ol and Bog­dan Kul­min­s­ki of the Blue Heron B&B on Orcas Island, rep­re­sent­ed the San Juan Islands dur­ing “Tourism Day” in Olympia, with more than 250 tourism indus­try pro­fes­sion­als from around the state.

They took part in the “Why Tourism Mat­ters” ral­ly on the Capi­tol steps, met with Dis­trict 40 leg­is­la­tors Sen­a­tor Kevin Ranker, Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jeff Mor­ris and Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Dave Quall, then enjoyed a recep­tion at the Governor’s Man­sion.  Gov­er­nor Chris Gre­goire spoke at the recep­tion, with enthu­si­as­tic sup­port of the tourism indus­try, which is Washington’s 4th largest indus­try (fol­low­ing soft­ware, aero­space and agriculture/food/wine).

Left to Right – Robin Jacobson, Carol Kulminski, Deborah Hopkins, Sen. Kevin Ranker, Bogdan Kulminski

Left to Right – Robin Jacobson, Carol Kulminski, Deborah Hopkins, Sen. Kevin Ranker, Bogdan Kulminski

The news release below con­tains fur­ther infor­ma­tion, fol­lowed by the list of media cov­er­age received so far.  The day was coor­di­nat­ed by the Wash­ing­ton State Des­ti­na­tion Mar­ket­ing Asso­ci­a­tion and Seattle’s Con­ven­tion & Vis­i­tors Bureau.

(The pho­to was tak­en in Sen Ranker’s office.  Left to Right – Robin Jacob­son, Car­ol Kul­min­s­ki, Deb­o­rah Hop­kins, Sen. Kevin Ranker, Bog­dan Kulminski)

News Release & Media Report By David Bland­ford, Direc­tor of Pub­lic Rela­tions, Seattle’s Con­ven­tion & Vis­i­tors Bureau

Wash­ing­ton State’s Tourism Indus­try Unites in Olympia
New Statewide Advo­ca­cy Cam­paign to be Announced on Capi­tol Steps,
Gov­er­nor Pro­claims “Tourism Day in Wash­ing­ton State”

OLYMPIA, WASH. – Today more than 250 tourism indus­try pro­fes­sion­als from Taco­ma, Spokane, Belling­ham, Yaki­ma, Van­cou­ver, Seat­tle and many oth­er com­mu­ni­ties across Wash­ing­ton will con­verge on the state capi­tol to tell leg­is­la­tors Why Tourism Matters.

An indus­try ral­ly and press con­fer­ence will be held on the state capitol’s north steps at 1:30 p.m. by a coali­tion of con­ven­tion and vis­i­tor bureaus, cham­bers of com­merce and oth­er des­ti­na­tion mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions from across the state.

The effort inau­gu­rates the statewide roll-out of the Why Tourism Mat­ters pub­lic out­reach and advo­ca­cy cam­paign which will con­vey the impor­tance of tourism by way of adver­tis­ing, online con­tent, pub­lic rela­tions and coop­er­a­tive communications.

The cam­paign web­site at www.whytourismmatters.com will go live today at 1:30 p.m., fea­tur­ing the lat­est tourism sta­tis­tics for the state and many com­mu­ni­ties, indus­try news and links to nation­al ini­tia­tives. Much of the web site is ded­i­cat­ed to pro­files of local tourism indus­try pro­fes­sion­als, or “tourism ambas­sadors,” who work on the front­lines and serve as the industry’s face of tourism.

These tourism ambas­sadors will attend today’s event in Olympia. Oth­er par­tic­i­pants – many clad in work-day uni­forms and cos­tumes — rep­re­sent the spec­trum of the tourism indus­try: from hotel man­agers and house­keep­ing atten­dants to restau­ra­teurs and servers, tour lead­ers, trav­el agents, con­ven­tion cen­ter pres­i­dents, vint­ners, artists, bell cap­tains, tour boat cap­tains and at least one cabaret performer.

“Today the tourism indus­try in Wash­ing­ton State has many mes­sen­gers but one com­mon mes­sage: tourism mat­ters,” said Kather­ine Kertz­man, Pres­i­dent of the Wash­ing­ton State Des­ti­na­tion Mar­ket­ing Orga­ni­za­tions (WSDMO). “Vis­i­tors to the state spent $15.7 bil­lion here last year and gen­er­at­ed $1 bil­lion in state and local tax­es. Tourists sup­port near­ly 150,000 jobs and gen­er­ate $4.3 bil­lion in earnings.”

Fol­low­ing the ral­ly, the statewide tourism indus­try con­tin­gent will call on state leg­is­la­tors to ask for their sup­port in two areas of con­cern: main­tain­ing cur­rent fund­ing lev­els for the 2009–2011 state tourism office bud­get; and sup­port of SB 5875 and SHB  2297 which call for fund­ing to study expan­sion options for the Wash­ing­ton State Con­ven­tion & Trade Center.

Today’s state ini­tia­tives coin­cide with nation­al news, includ­ing cur­rent tourism indus­try efforts to coun­ter­bal­ance the harm­ful polit­i­cal rhetoric and sen­sa­tion­al­ism that is influ­enc­ing the unnec­es­sary can­cel­la­tion of cor­po­rate meet­ings and events across the U.S.

The U.S. Asso­ci­a­tion of Amer­i­ca ranks $740 bil­lion trav­el and tourism indus­try fifth in nation among 20 major pri­vate indus­try sec­tors. The indus­try direct­ly employ­ees 7.5 mil­lion peo­ple, gen­er­ates pay­roll of $178 bil­lion and tax rev­enues of about $110 bil­lion. Vis­i­tors to the U.S. spent more here than U.S. res­i­dents trav­el­ing abroad, cre­at­ing a pos­i­tive bal­ance of trade of $8.3 bil­lion for the nation­al economy.

Wash­ing­ton State’s core of pri­vate sec­tor des­ti­na­tion mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions com­pet­i­tive­ly mar­ket their respec­tive cities, coun­ties and regions to leisure trav­el­ers and meet­ing and con­ven­tion groups.  Large­ly non-prof­it eco­nom­ic devel­op­ment agen­cies, these con­ven­tion and vis­i­tor bureaus and cham­bers of com­merce work in tan­dem with the Wash­ing­ton State Tourism Com­mis­sion and Wash­ing­ton State Tourism office to joint­ly posi­tion the state as a pre­mier trav­el des­ti­na­tion.  Direct vis­i­tor spend­ing ben­e­fits hotels, retail­ers, restau­rants, attrac­tions, trans­porta­tion ser­vices and oth­er busi­ness­es, and sup­ports jobs in through­out the state.

To learn more about why tourism mat­ters to Wash­ing­ton State, vis­it www.whytourismmatters.com.

Here’s what we know so far on the news front.  More is com­ing in and we’ll send an update in a day or two. –David Bland­ford, Seat­tle CVB

Yaki­ma Her­ald (page one, 3/9) – “Invis­i­ble Tourism”

Taco­ma News Tri­bune  (3/9) – “Taco­ma Tourism Sees Mini Boom

Taco­ma News Tri­bune (3/8) – Tourism Funding

KING‑5 TV (3/9, Seattle)

North­west Cable News (3/9, statewide)

KONG TV (Seat­tle, 3/9)

KIRO News­ra­dio

KAYA Fox TV News (Spokane) – sto­ry about half-way through

KREM TV (Spokane)

KSTW TV (Taco­ma) – sto­ry to follow

Q13 TV (Seat­tle) – sto­ry to fol­low 3/9 or 3/10

PR Week (nation­al trade) – sto­ry to fol­low in March

Soci­ety of Amer­i­can Trav­el Writ­ers nation­al newslet­ter – sto­ry to fol­low in March

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