10.18.11 – Executive Director Update

October 18, 2011 – Round Tables Completed

In the last two weeks, three Round Tables were held. Long Beach was a great audience for us. They asked some tough questions about our business plan and how we would represent them as a destination. How did we work with their local Destination Marketing Organization (DMO)? What could they do to help? We took the scenic byway to Long Beach, and it was quite an amazing drive! Have you been down that road? Breathtaking views of the coast!

Last Tuesday I presented in Olympia, the home of our State Legislature. I was thrilled to have some elected officials in the audience, but it was particularly enjoyable having Senator Maralyn Chase. She was particularly interested in tourism and how it relates to economic development and jobs within this state. She sees the value of Tourism not only the investment of money, but the investment in people, aka JOBS! She has reached out to me for follow up information and details explaining just how important tourism is to this state, and plans on using it at an Economic Development Committee Meeting.

Thank you Senator Chase.

The last of the 13 scheduled round tables took place last week in Seattle with almost 300 attendees! We were very happy with the turn out and had a great question an answer period. This particular location had many suggestions for us to take back such as new partnership opportunities, ideas for building our base of membership, and many offers of support and volunteer hours.

Other Public Speaking

While the Round Tables have ended, the speaking opportunities have not. I had the fortunate opportunity to address the annual convention for the Washington Lodging Association earlier this month at the Tulalip Resort. Hotels, suppliers, and members of the media were there. I believe this was record attendance for the WLA’s annual convention. Congratulations to Jan and team.

I will be visiting Port Townsend tomorrow to speak to the attendees of the Olympic Peninsula Tourism Conference. This will be my second visit to the peninsula in less than a month, that ferry ride across the Sound is a beautiful commute!

While I didn’t speak, I did have the opportunity to attend (and support our partners) the PURE Travel Collaborative Green Show on October 14. Hats off to our friends at EverGreen Escapes and all the other volunteers who put together this very informative and important event. It’s no longer the wave of the future…green is here! Live it!

2012 Official WA State Visitors Guide

We have a lot of excitement and momentum surrounding the Official 2012 Washington State Visitors’ Guide.

The editorial board is working hard on the story line-up encouraging travelers to visit our great state, with plenty of reasons to check out all areas of Washington.

Advertising sales are going strong. Remember, through this partnership between the WTA and the WLA, the WTA will receive a share of revenues, providing seed money for some of the great ideas I have been hearing at the statewide roundtable discussions. So I encourage you to reserve as big an ad as possible – just another way your dollars can help support the WTA and Washington tourism efforts. We will have more information on online marketing opportunities with www.experiencewa.com and electronic newsletters very soon.

For questions on the Official 2012 Washington State Visitors’ Guide please contact Jeff Adams, VP of Custom Publishing at Sagacity Media. He can be reached at 206-957-2234 ext 107 or jadams@sagacitymedia.com.

Experience WA.com
Did you know the official website for the State of Washington is ExperienceWa.com? And were you aware that the State has offered to transfer this incredible asset to the WTA by the end of the year? The state had asked that the WTA present a business plan and timeline to determine how it would be used and in what capacity. The State also wanted reassurance that all privacy laws and promises were going to be followed. We presented that plan last week and are waiting for their approval. If all goes as planned, the WTA will take possession of the site on January 1. Look for further updates in upcoming newsletters.

Board Meeting
A WTA Board meeting was held on October 6th at the Tacoma Regional Visitor and Convention Bureau. We were fortunate to have a few member/guests attend the meeting, and welcome anyone to attend upcoming Board Meetings. The 2011-12 Board meeting schedule is posted on our website www.watourismalliance.com. Our goal is to be as open and available to our membership as possible. While we recognize not all members can attend, we believe it is imperative to communicate to our members in a very consistent manner. As of today, the Board meeting minutes will be posted on the website no more than one week after the Board meeting. We want you to feel confident your investment is money well spent. Our goal going forward is to have all committees post their activities on a quarterly basis on the WTA website also.

Please feel free to send your comments or questions to info@watourismalliance.com.

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