Last week I was down in Long Beach promoting Calaveras County at the annual Los Angeles Travel & Adventure Show. According to event promoters, this year’s attendance now makes it the largest travel show in the United States and it certainly seemed that way!
I talked to literally thousands of people about Calaveras County and handed out more than 1,000 copies of our annual Activities Guide. I love this part of my work. Telling people about our beautiful and vibrant county is an absolute pleasure. People love hearing there’s no need to travel thousands of miles to find a quality vacation destination rich in history, arts and culture, culinary excellence, award winning wines and incredible recreational diversity in an outstanding environment. It’s truly a winning combination.
These travel shows are not only an important way to showcase the county, they are also a great place to make contacts with key travel industry partners and media. This year’s show provided us the potential opportunity to feature a lodging partner in another reality TV production for a major network. A casting producer approached me during the show and expressed enthusiastic interest after I followed up with her earlier this week. I would say at this point that there is a strong likelihood we can procure this coverage, scheduled for shooting between April and July this year. Stay tuned for more information!
Beyond networking, travel shows are also a way to help gauge the traveling public’s interest. Larger numbers at these travel shows demonstrates more people planning to utilize their disposable income for tourism-based activities over the coming year. Additionally, a recent study sponsored by the Outdoor Industry Association, shows that outdoor recreation in the United States increased 5 percent between 2005 and 2011. These trends are good news for us.
As we already know from the Dean Runyan reports prepared for California Tourism, Calaveras County’s tourism industry brings in approximately $150 million in revenue annually. You can take a look at some graphs posted here on our website on the page: The Importance of Tourism to Calaveras County showing the travel impacts of tourism on Calaveras County, or go to the California Travel Impacts app on Dean Runyan’s website and create your own, compare us to our neighboring counties and see the state’s tourism stats.
Let’s see if the trend continues. Next month I’ll be promoting Calaveras County at the Bay Area Travel Show (and loving every minute of it).