Tourism Leaders Convene for River Parishes Virtual Summit

106492885 119239619834682 8996161412893478909 OLAPLACE, La. -Last week, Louisiana’s River Parishes Tourist Commission hosted its second annual Louisiana’s River Parishes Tourism Summit as a virtual experience. The free, all-day event featured a keynote presentation by Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser and provided individuals and organizations with an interest or investment in regional tourism with critical information on industry innovations, best practices, and regional updates. 

“We are looking forward to the culmination of our strategic planning, as well as the public’s response to our efforts in preserving and elevating our destination’s economy,” said Buddy Boe, Executive director of LARPTC. “The Commission is working diligently to provide the resources our hospitality leaders and businesses need to both thrive and serve visitors to our region.”

The summit once again featured two educational tracks: sales/marketing and destination development. The sales/marketing track focused on helping partners understand the sales process, packaging for group travel, working with the LARPTC, and social and digital media. The destination development track offered presentations on historic preservation, case studies on creating historic districts, why a strong tourism organization is vital to a region’s success and creating a unique visitor experience through events. Representatives from Top Tier Travel, the American Bus Association and Cane River National Heritage Area were among the lineup of speakers discussing a myriad of topics including the “Importance of Digital: Now More Than Ever,” “The Secret to Group Experiences that Go Above and Beyond,” and “Working with Louisiana’s River Parishes as a Brand.”

More than two dozen industry leaders addressed attendees of the virtual event including St. James Parish President Pete Dufrense and St. Charles Parish President Matthew Jewell. Additional highlights included the highly-anticipated unveiling of Louisiana’s River Parishes 2030 Strategic Plan and the Second Annual Leadership in Tourism Awards. Award winners included:

  • Rising Star Award – 1811 Kid Ory Historic House
  • Ambassador Award – Blood, Sweat, and Bonfires
  • Legislator Award – Rep. Ken Brass
  • Partner Award – Destrehan Plantation
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Angie Matherne

“We’re mindful of taking precautions in response to the pandemic, as well as ensuring that our tourism partners can learn more about our destination’s plans in bringing tourism dollars to our region,” said Garrett Monti, board chairman of LARPTC. “We are excited to lead the charge in transforming regional tourism through smart initiatives. While we do not doubt that our virtual abilities will continue to develop and play a role in our arsenal, we look forward to welcoming visitors back to our region.”

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