Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Washington Filmworks Newsletter – Yakima Desert and Beauty – April 14, 2015

Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

Washington Filmworks Newsletter - Yakima Desert and Beauty - April 14, 2015

Seattle Met– Washington Beer What’s New What’s Next and Why Lager Doesn’t Really Suck-April 2015

Monday, March 30th, 2015

Seattle Met-Washington Beer Whats New Whats Next and Why Lager Doesnt Really Suck-April 2015

Washington State Visitors’ Guide 2015

Monday, March 30th, 2015

Washington-State-Visitors-Guide-2015

Welcome to National Travel and Tourism Week

Monday, May 5th, 2014

Yakima, WA – May 3-11 is National Travel and Tourism Week, when across America, the tourism industry celebrates the role travel plays in the economy and their communities.

To kick off the celebration, last week Yakima Valley Tourism hosted a tourism awards luncheon at the Yakima Convention Center, with 200 business and civic leaders in attendance. Bale Breaker Brewery was presented Tourism Business of the Year for their unique brewery operation in a working hop field and the media attention they have garnered since they opened last year. John Baule, Director of the Yakima Valley Museum, was recognized as Tourism Person of the Year for his past and present efforts to enhance Yakima as a destination and his service to numerous arts and community organizations.

Tourism is a big industry for Yakima County. Travelers in 2013 spent $359 million in the county, which is up 4.7% since 2008 when the national economy entered a recession. “With the exception of a slight dip in 2010, travel and tourism grew each year for the past five years,” stated John Cooper, President & CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism. “That’s a testament to the strength and endurance of this industry in our region, even during economic downturns.”

There are 3,530 people employed in tourism in Yakima County. Visitors generate around $24 million a year in state and local taxes, which Cooper points out goes towards public services enjoyed by local residents including police, fire, parks and roads.

The U.S. Travel Association (U.S.T.A.) has developed a campaign called the Travel Effect, which illustrates the impact travel and tourism has on our lives, businesses and local, state and national economies. According to U.S.T.A., travel supports 15 million jobs across the nation. The workforce includes workers in the transportation, hotel, restaurant, attraction and retail sectors. In addition, travel and tourism supports employees in other industry sectors such as construction, manufacturing and finance.

U.S.T.A. reports that travel also promotes physical and physiological health and improves workplace productivity. In 2013, the average U.S. employee skipped 3.2 days of paid time off. According to a recent study, if workers used all of their available paid time off, the U.S. economy would gain $160 billion in additional annual business sales, which would support 1.2 million new jobs and generate $21 billion in new annual tax revenues. 

“It is now empirical, rather than just anecdotal, that travel is a key driver for improving individual health and strengthening our businesses and economy,” said Roger Dow, President & CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, the organization representing the U.S. travel industry.  “Travel holds measurable benefits for our minds, bodies, relationships, businesses and economy.  Travel should be celebrated every day.” 

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Yakima Valley Tourism Awards Presented

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

Yakima, WA: Yakima Valley Tourism recognized a local business and individual for their contributions to the tourism industry at an awards luncheon today.  Bale Breaker Brewery was presented Tourism Business of the Year for their unique brewery operation in a working hop field and for the media attention they have garnered since they opened in April 2013. John Baule, Director of the Yakima Valley Museum, was recognized as Tourism Person of the Year for his past and present efforts to enhance Yakima as a destination and his service to numerous arts and community organizations.

The luncheon was attended by 200 business and community leaders at the Yakima Convention Center. It was held in advance of National Travel and Tourism Week, which celebrates the roles tourism plays in the economy and community development. Keynote speaker was Pat Cashman, a Seattle based TV personality and speaker.

The mission of Yakima Valley Tourism is to stimulate economic development by marketing the Yakima Valley for conventions, groups and leisure travel.

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Yakima Valley Featured in National Geographic Book on Dog Travel

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Yakima- National Geographic Books has released “The Dog Lover’s Guide to Travel” which includes dog friendly businesses, attractions and outdoor areas in 75 pet-friendly cities and regions across the United States and Canada. The Yakima Valley is one of six communities in the Pacific Northwest featured in the book.

The Dog Lover’s Guide to Travel was written by Kelly Carter, a New York Times best-selling author and pet travel expert for AOL’s Paw Nation and Elite Traveler. In each destination Carter highlights pet offerings including hotels, parks, pet shops and pet friendly businesses. Features of the book include walks to take with your dog, insider tips from local pet owners and sidebars detailing opportunities for people with a dog in tow. 

Yakima Valley Tourism approached Carter in early 2013 as the book was being developed.  In 2012 the tourism office had created WineDoggies.com, an award winning program developed to assist visitors traveling with their dogs to the Yakima Valley.  “When we found out she was writing this book we knew the Yakima Valley was the right fit,” stated John Cooper, President & CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism.  “We enjoyed working with Ms. Carter and are honored our community was included.” 

WineDoggies.com provides pet-friendly businesses and must-see stops in the region.  It also includes a ‘Doggie Bloggie’ hosted by a local canine, an interactive map of 50 plus dog-friendly businesses with open-pet policies and a section where dog-friendly businesses and guests can add pictures and stories of their dogs enjoying Washington’s wine country.  In addition to featuring the Wine Doggies website, the book highlights numerous Yakima Valley walking and hiking trails, local pet services, dog friendly wineries and pet events.  

The other Northwest cities included in the book are Seattle, Portland, Bend, Coeur d’Alene and Missoula.  The Dog Lover’s Guide to Travel can be found at local bookstores, Amazon.com and National Geographic’s online bookstore. 

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Yakima Valley Tourism Launches Spring Marketing Campaign

Friday, April 4th, 2014

March 24, 2014 – Yakima Valley Tourism has launched their spring marketing campaign to attract visitors. “Find Spring in the Yakima Valley” targets wine visitors, families and others interested in sunny spring events, local culture and activities.

Visitors to Yakima Valley Tourism’s website www.visityakima.com/find-spring will find details on seasonal festivals including Spring Barrel Weekend April 25-27, Cinco de Mayo festivities May 3-4 plus numerous other events. Visitors to the website may also enter a Wine Country Get-Away Giveaway that includes lodging, dinner in Downtown Yakima, VIP wine tasting at three Yakima Valley wineries plus a $100 gift card toward new Oakley sunglasses.

“Spring in the Yakima Valley is a unique Washington experience,” stated John Cooper, President & CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism. “In one destination you can combine sunshine, blooming orchards, spring barrel wine tastings and many other celebrations.”

The campaign is largely focused at consumers online and is supported by media buys in Sunset magazine, online versions of the Seattle Times, Washington Tasting Room Magazine (print and online) and 425 Magazine (print and online) plus social media placements in Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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2014 Yakima Valley Official Visitors Guide™ Released

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Yakima, Wash. – The 2014 Yakima Valley Official Visitors Guide™ has been released. The full-color, 60-page guide covers the communities, events and attractions in the Yakima Valley region, from Red Mountain to White Pass. It is a free publication of Yakima Valley Tourism.

“What’s different about the guide is that it’s designed to have a consistent look,” stated John Cooper, President & CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism. “From the advertisements to the city listings the design flows well. It reads more like a travel magazine than a typical visitors guide.”

The guide includes information on the area’s wineries, produce stands and farmer’s markets, local heritage, festivals, outdoor adventure, dining, lodging, museums, arts, entertainment, shopping, relocation and more. New additions include the Spirits and Hops Trail and Wine Doggies programs.

To receive a free issue of the 2014 Yakima Valley Official Visitors Guide™ call (509) 575-3010, toll free (800) 221-0751, e-mail info@yakimavalleytourism.com or stop by the Yakima Valley Visitors Information Center at 101 North Fair Avenue, off Interstate 82 in Yakima. A digital version is available at www.yakimavalleytourism.com.

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WASHINGTON WINE COMMISSION RECOGNIZES LOCAL TOURISM PROFESSIONAL

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Yakima, WA – John Cooper, President & CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism, was recognized Monday, January 27th at the Washington State Wine Awards in Seattle. Cooper was presented the Tourism Concierge Award for 2014 in recognition of his service to the wine industry and wine tourism.

Started in 2002 by the Washington Wine Commission, the Washington State Wine Awards recognizes industry leaders that exhibit strong support of Washington wines and high professional standards in wine service. The Tourism Concierge Award recognizes an individual that represents the tourism or wine industry with the highest professional standards, serves as an example to peers and a mentor for new tourism industry professionals, advances the wine tourism industry as a whole and advocates for its causes.

“I am honored to have been nominated and selected,” Cooper stated. “I give credit to the staff at Yakima Valley Tourism and the wineries in the valley. They deserve recognition for all they do to advance wine tourism.”

Cooper has been with Yakima Valley Tourism (formerly called the Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau) since 2007. A non-profit organization, the mission of Yakima Valley Tourism is to stimulate economic development by marketing the Yakima Valley for conventions, groups and leisure travel.

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Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau Changes Name

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Yakima, WA- The agency responsible for developing and marketing tourism for the Yakima Valley has a new name. Effective today, the Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau will be doing business as Yakima Valley Tourism. The change resulted from a board retreat last year as the organization made future plans for tourism in the region.

Yakima Valley Tourism made the announcement today at the Yakima Convention Center where it presented to the public updates and issues facing the local, state and national tourism industries.

“The new name is easier to remember, better reflects our mission and coincides with the launch of our six-year strategic plan,” stated John Cooper, President & CEO. “Our organization is responsible for all facets of tourism including conventions and groups, visitor services, sports and leisure travel. Tourism is an inclusive word for all sectors of the industry.”

The main website the organization will use to promote the Yakima Valley will be www.yakimavalleytourism.com.

Yakima Valley Tourism is a non-profit trade association. It has been known as Yakima Valley Visitors & Convention Bureau since forming in 1957.

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