Evers celebrates National Travel and Tourism Week | News

Governor Tony Evers celebrated National Wisconsin Travel and Tourism Week last week with a video message and a stop across the state highlighting the strength of Wisconsin’s travel and tourism industry and the critical role it plays in the state’s economy. Governor Evers has invested $1 billion in federal money in Wisconsin in small businesses and other industries affected by the pandemic, $200 million of which has been invested in the travel, tourism, hotel, lodging and entertainment industries alone.

“We already knew that the travel and tourism industry in Wisconsin was a primary economic driver in our state, and we saw that firsthand last week from Door County to La Crosse,” Governor Evers said. “This industry is incredibly resilient, and through the investments we have made as well as the hard work, determination and ingenuity of so many business owners, workers and industry leaders, we are working together to make sure these critical industries continue to recover and recover.”

On Tuesday, May 3, to kick off National Travel and Tourism Week, Governor Evers, along with designated Wisconsin Department of Tourism Secretary Ann Sayers, joined the Destination Door County National Travel and Tourism Breakfast in Sturgeon Bay. While there, he heard from local leaders about the state of industry in Door County, witnessed the signing of a new entity agreement between Destination Door County and the Door County Tourism District Authority, and participated in an update on statewide tourism and key investments made by the department to help the industry recovery and recovery.

“We are delighted that Governor Evers and Designated Secretary of Tourism Ann Sayers of Door County will join us for a tourism industry breakfast on May 3,” said Julie Gilbert, CEO and President of Destination Door County. “It was a special day to learn about all the positive things tourism provides to stakeholders and residents of Door County, and to be here in person to celebrate with us their support for our industry, not just in Door County, but across the state.”

After their visit in County Door, Governor Evers and Secretary Sayers went to La Crosse where they joined with Explore La Crosse, along with several local elected leaders, for a trolley tour of the city, stopping at Grandad Bluff, and learning about the new cruise ship dock in Riverside Park, and wander through the newly renovated La Crosse Center. Finally, they finished their day by stopping for an ice cream at The Pearl.

“This week, the La Crosse region was excited to welcome Governor Evers and Secretary-designate Ann Sayers to celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week 2022,” said AJ Frels, Executive Director of Explore La Crosse. “With the La Crosse region moving forward from 2021, just like Wisconsin, we are pleased to report that the region’s tourism industry recovery has come much faster than anyone expected. With a focus on leisure travel, our region was able to see revenue numbers that competed and even, in Some months past our base year of 2019. La Crosse looks forward to continuing to boost tourism growth in our region as we journey through 2022 and beyond.”

Then, on Wednesday, May 4, Governor Evers and Representative Secretary General Sayers visited the Inn at SentryWorld in Stevens Point, to join SentryWorld and the Stevens Point Area Convention and Visitors Bureau for a press conference and tour of the complex. SentryWorld has been selected to host the 2023 Senior US Open, which will be the first Senior Open and third USGA tournament they host. While there, the governor and secretary also submitted two checks to the Stevens Point Area Convention and Visitors Bureau that were approved by the Tourism Board on April 26, including a “Ready Set Go!” A $30,000 Scholarship and a $29,488 Meetings Means Business Scholarship.

“Tourism is at the core of everything we do,” said Sarah Breish, executive director of the Stevens Point Area & Visitors Bureau. “From cultivating new ideas, strengthening relationships, and creating positive economic impact that supports local businesses, jobs, and communities – tourism is vital to our success. We are grateful to receive two grants from the State of Wisconsin. These grants allow us to invest in tourism and keep our industry moving forward.”

In addition, on Friday, May 6, Governor Evers and members of his cabinet hosted “Cabinet on the Road” events in the Eau Claire region with events in Osseo, Altoona and Menomonie to meet with local business owners, farmers, and elected officials and discuss economic and community development projects that benefit the Region. Stops included a visit to the Goplin Homestead farm in Osseo to discuss agritourism, a tour of the Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts and a discussion about housing insecurity and homelessness issues in Menomonie, a visit to a local business and a discussion with the city from Altoona about a downtown revitalization project that would boost the local economy and bring in business Commercial and new visitors to the downtown area, many small business stations and local restaurants. To wrap up the day’s visits, Governor Evers and his Cabinet took a tour of The Brewing Projekt with owner Will Glass, in Eau Claire.

Finally, on Friday May 6 and Saturday May 7, Governor Evers attended the 2022 Shell Lake Fishing Opening Ceremony to help celebrate the end of winter and the start of the 2022-23 fishing season in Wisconsin, also as a vital role fishing plays in Wisconsin’s tourism industry. In 2020, Wisconsin ranked third in the state in terms of selling out-of-state fishing licenses.

In addition to the governor’s pauses detailed above, the governor also announced last week that Wisconsin has outpaced the national average travel spending compared to 2019 over the past 24 months, indicating a strong recovery for the industry in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Wisconsin’s tourism industry maintained $17.3 billion in business sales in 2020, and supported more than 157,000 jobs. While economic impact data for 2021 is expected to be released in June 2022, monthly visitor spending compared to 2019 Wisconsin records has been above zero percent for four of the past six months, demonstrating Wisconsin’s continued recovery in a positive direction.

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