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Conferences help CVB market area, attract travelers

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Hello again, Miner and Sikeston! It's been a long and lonely month waiting to talk to you again. You never write-- You never call... I was beginning to think you'd forgotten all about me--er, the CVB. But don't worry about us, you have your life, and we're so proud of you. You're here now, and that's all that matters. (Can you tell I visited my family for the holidays?)

December was a quiet month for the CVB. Much of the time since we last spoke has been spent putting together our Fiscal Year 2009 Cooperative Marketing Plan. If all goes well, the Missouri Division of Tourism will be providing the CVB with just under $25,000 in matching funds for activities such as trade shows, placing magazine ads, and redesigning the CVB Web site.

While grant writing may not be as thrilling as traveling to far-flung locales and hyping our little communities, it is nevertheless vital to the success of our marketing program. Now that that is out of the way, however, the CVB is (I am) getting excited about our upcoming conferences.

At the end of the month I will be traveling to Lakeland, Fla., to the Canadian Snowbird Extravaganza. Snowbirds -- those folks who have the good sense to spend the winter down south and the summer up north -- are an important audience for the CVB's marketing efforts. Many of them already pass by us twice a year, and it's our goal to convince them to stop and stay a while during their journeys.

I will be barely back from Florida when I jet off to Virginia Beach, Va., for the American Bus Association Conference. This conference provides the CVB a chance to hype our destination to tour operators and to meet other DMO's (Destination Marketing Organizations) like ourselves, thus building and strengthening our network of contacts.

After the ABA Conference, I will return to my office for all of a week, which perhaps will give me time to make a tunnel through the pile of work that has built up in my absence, get to my desk and answer a couple e-mails before having to leave again.

My next stop will be St. Louis for the Working Women's Survival Show, where the CVB will target working women (who'd have guessed?) and invite them to come to Sikeston and Miner for a weekend getaway from their hectic life. And all this only takes us up through the end of February. Superwoman? No, you flatter me too much. You're making me blush. Well, I can put on the cape if you insist, but really it does nothing for my coloring. But I digress--

Where were we? Ah, the end of February. March will bring two more conferences, but you will just have to wait until next month to hear about them.

As usual, if this article has inspired in you a sense of civic duty and you just can't wait to volunteer with the CVB or if you want to learn more about us, please check out our Web site at www.visitsikeston-miner.com or call 471-

6362. Until next time, my loyal fans--er, my fellow citizens, I bid you adieu.