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Visit Champaign County announces inaugural Tourism Summit

Visit Champaign County has announced an inaugural Tourism Summit. The theme is “Telling Your Story,” and two tracks will be offered on August 16, 1:00– 4:30 p.m. and August 17, 8:00–11:30 a.m. at the Hyatt Place. The goal is to grow Champaign County as a destination.

For over a year, Visit Champaign County has been telling Champaign County’s “Outside of Ordinary” story to potential visitors. The organization showcases our community’s many unique attractions, events, and outdoor spaces.

The Tourism Summit will feature keynote speaker, Jack Johnson, Chief Advocacy Officer, Destination Management Association International (DMAI), discussing how to work with a Destination Marketing Organization (DMO). Two panels will also be a part of the program. The first panel, Telling Your Story, will feature panelists Carl Catedral, Adjacency; Lisa Meid, Surface 51; Laura Bleill, University of Illinois Research Park/Chambana Moms; and Chelsea Norton, Champaign Park District. The second panel, Partnerships and Destination Packaging, will focus on creating partnerships and showcasing success stories from local partnerships. Panelists include Beckie Kane, Big Grove Tavern; Dawn VanBuskirk, Hilton Properties; Don Flynn, Game Day USA; and Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery.

At the conclusion of each session, businesses are encouraged to network and learn about each other in order to tell a better story and work on potential partnerships that will ultimately draw in visitor traffic.

Community members, local businesses touched by tourism, media and more are encouraged to attend one of the two sessions. The cost to participate is $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Registration as well as program information can be found here or by calling 217-351-4133.

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