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CT Tourism Industry Explores Travel Trends at Ninth Annual Governor's Conference on Tourism

HARTFORD, CT - April 8, 2002 - The Ninth Annual Governor's Conference on Tourism and Fifteenth Annual Unity Dinner opens April 11, 2002. The two-day conference, to be held at the Mystic Marriott Hotel & Spa in Groton, Connecticut, features nationally renowned keynote speakers and Connecticut experts, individuals and organizations that are contributing to the success and growth of the state's tourism industry. Connecticut Tourism Council representatives will present the 2002 Connecticut Tourism Industry Awards and Scholarships at the conference's Fifteenth Annual Unity Dinner that evening.

This year's conference theme, Striking a New Balance, recognizes the need to continue to move forward in a changing environment. Tourism has proven to be essential to Connecticut's economic well being and continues to demonstrate the exceptional quality of life that we all enjoy and share with our visitors. Connecticut's travel and tourism industry currently contributes $5 billion in gross revenue to the state's economy.

Keynote speakers at the conference include several industry experts who will provide information on current industry issues. The opening session on Thursday, April 11, will be hosted by Jonathan M. Tisch, Chairman and CEO of Loews Hotels, Chairman of the Travel Business Roundtable, and recently appointed Chairman of New York Rising, helping to rebuild the city in the aftermath of September 11th. Tisch is known for his strong belief that partnerships are key to success in virtually every business; he provides a global perspective to move forward in today's changing environment.

Friday's opening session, "Online Marketing", is presented by keynote speaker Omar Wasow. Newsweek names Wasow one of the "fifty most influential people to watch in cyberspace"; he is NBC's internet analyst and commentator on the challenges and opportunities of new media and new economy. His keen insider's perspective reveals web-related marketing and business strategies that work. Also speaking Friday is Chip Conley, author of The Rebel Rules: Daring to be Yourself in Business. Conley is the Founder and CEO of Joie de Vivre Hospitality; his relationship-based business model promotes customer loyalty through quality experiences. At age 26 Conley created his first hotel; his cutting edge mentality turned his boutique hotel business into a thriving 800-employee company with 26 properties.

The conference opens at 8:00 a.m. Thursday and includes travel and tourism programs designed to address current needs of multiple segments within the industry. Topics discussed in workshop sessions include: Proactive Security Solutions to Fit the Way You do Business, Experiences Without Borders: The Big 'E' Theme, Strategic Alliances & Packaging, Fifty Tips on Maximizing Your Web-Site, Family Travel, and Non-Traditional Marketing Partners.

The Fifteenth Annual Unity Dinner, Thursday night, will include the presentation of the 2002 Connecticut Tourism Industry Awards to key individuals who made significant contributions to Connecticut tourism success. Scholarships will also be awarded at the ceremony.

The conference and dinner are sponsored annually by the Connecticut Tourism Council and the Department of Economic & Community Development, Office of Tourism with support from over 40 industry sponsors.


Note to Editors:

Members of the press are welcome to attend the Conference and Unity Dinner. For additional information, to obtain a press pass or to schedule interviews with keynote speakers, tourism officials or industry leaders please contact: Kathleen Goffa at 203-624-4151 ext. 30.


Treasure Hunt Through Time

  1. Ridgefield's Keeler Tavern Museum, 132 Main St., is on the National Register of Historic Places and features a British cannonball embedded in the wall. After a visit, stroll Main Street for shopping, dining and a visit to The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art.
  2. Head up to Rte. 7...

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