Local leaders attend Wisconsin Governor’s Conference on Tourism

Error message

  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 133 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to get property 'settings' of non-object in _simpleads_adgroup_settings() (line 343 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 157 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in include() (line 24 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/templates/simpleads_ajax_call.tpl.php).

Representing the Southwest Wisconsin Chamber and Tourism groups at the Governors Conference 2023 are: (l-r) Tammie Katzung PDC Mainstreet, Tracy Fishnick, Cassville Tourism Director, Sherry Quamme, Chairperson of WI Great River Road & Ferryville Tourism, and Bob Moses, Director of PdC Chamber and Tourism. (Contributed photo)

By Melissa R. Collum

The 2023 Wisconsin Governor’s Conference on Tourism (WIGCOT) was held in Green Bay from March 12-14. It is an annual educational and motivational event for the industry to learn from experts, see what’s ahead for Travel Wisconsin’s annual campaigns, network, and celebrate the Governor’s Tourism Award winners and nominees.
Sherry Quamme, Chairperson for the WI Mississippi River Parkway Commission/WI Great River Road National Scenic Byway reflected on the goals of the conference “This conference is where we learn about the upcoming marketing campaign for Wisconsin and what the key messages are for the year.  Prairie du Chien Tourism Council and Chamber of Commerce is key partner for the Wisconsin Great River Road as the southern gateway and anchor community to the Wisconsin . Great River Road. We appreciate Bob Moses , Director PdC Chamber and PdC Tourism, and his team, who are members of the Wisconsin Great River Road Marketing and Promotion Commission. Tourism for Grant and Crawford counties has continued to grow and have a strong economic impact.”
Attendees heard from nationally renowned speakers in the field of tourism and learned how to expand and streamline tourism offerings for the area. “I enjoyed the push for more targeting of diverse cultures and abilities in tourism marketing,” noted Tammie Katzung PdC Mainstreet. The key marketing themes for 2023 are “Shared Moments of Joy” and “Here’s to Those Who Wisconsin”. It is the goal of the campaigns be marketed in the Chicago area plus in key regions of Iowa and Minnesota. “The marketing campaign from PDC Tourism is a feeder for the Wisconsin Great River Road and leverages us all including Grant and Crawford Counties,” notes Quamme.
An additional part of the conference is recognizing those people in the industry who have gone above and beyond in the field. This year, Tracy Fishnick, Village of Cassville Tourism office and Grant County Tourism Council, was nominated for the “Rising Star” Governor’s Tourism Award. This award recognizes individuals who are new to the industry who have shown leadership, commitment, and passion for Wisconsin tourism and have five or fewer years in the industry. There were 22 nominees in that category and the award recipient was Megan Langer of Prescott, a Wisconsin Great River Road community, who has been a leader the in rebuilding their downtown by creating Port of Prescott, a boutique hotel and two other hotels.
“Wisconsin’s travel and tourism industry continues to rebound and break records, and these talented, innovative award recipients have been key to that success,” said Gov. Evers, via a public announcement. “I’m proud to honor their good work and to propose significant investments in the state budget so we can keep supporting the hardworking folks in our tourism industry in the coming years.”
According to Travel Wisconsin, the total impact of Wisconsin’s tourism industry in 2021 was $20.9 billion. The impact was demonstrated in all of the 72 counties in Wisconsin. In 2022 Crawford County brought in $67 million dollars in tourism, a 21.1% increase from the $55 million in 2021. The U.S. Department of Commerce notes that in 2021, one in every twenty jobs in the United States was either directly or indirectly supported by travel and tourism. These jobs can be found in industries like lodging, food services, arts, entertainment, recreation, transportation, and education.
Tourism in Wisconsin supported more than 169,700 full and part-time jobs across diverse sectors of the industry, up 7 % over 2020 according to a 2021 report by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism. Wisconsin also hosted over 102.3 million visitor trips in 2021, up 12% from 2020. Visitors generated $1.4 billion in state and local taxes because of tourism spending. Without this tax revenue, each Wisconsin household would need to pay $580 to maintain the current level of government services generated by tourism.
For more data, including individual county figures and year-over-year growth, visit industry.travelwisconsin.com.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet