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Workshops are aimed at driving international tourism to upstate New York

New York, NY - I LOVE NEW YORK and Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor announced that they will host 2010 Tourism Readiness Workshops aimed at driving international tourism to upstate New York. The workshops, scheduled for August 30th through September 1st, are designed to help New York State's Tourism Promotion Agencies and other interested partners, understand how to best market their destination to the international traveler. The workshops are the result of a successful familiarization tour this spring, which stretched along the Erie Canalway, from Albany to Rochester. The tour brought Israeli tour operator Kay Tours and international media to New York's canal communities.  For three days, tourism partners will explore marketing strategies and view presentations from Avi Kaptzan, CEO of Kay New Century Tours Ltd., in Tel Aviv, Israel; Lori Solomon-Duell, Director of Tourism Development and Marketing for the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor; Chris Guidone, the Consultant for New York State Division of Tourism, current Director of Marketing and Membership for the Receptive Services Association of America; and Markly Wilson, Director of International Marketing for New York State Division of Tourism.  "For decades, I LOVE NEW YORK has helped support our economy by creating jobs and boosting tourism throughout the state," said Empire State Development (ESD) Executive Director Peter Davidson. "It is crucial that we sustain visitation throughout New York State. We have a wealth and variety of natural resources, arts and culture which can appeal to international visitors. Working hand in hand with the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor and our tourism partners, I am confident we can provide our partners with the tools they need to continue to drive tourism to all corners of the state."  "Though New York City is by far, the #1 destination in the nation for the international visitor -New York State destinations stand to benefit from this market, if they are interested and prepared," said ESD Vice President of Marketing Strategy for the Division of Travel and Tourism Maha Eltobgy. "From the Erie Canal Harbor in Buffalo to the Walkway over the Hudson, there are millions of reasons to love New York. International visitors spend substantially more time visiting New York State than domestic overnight travelers and are an important source of state revenue.  According to Tourism Economics, international visitors were responsible for nearly one-third of all in-state tourism spending in 2009, totaling $12.6 billion dollars. With tourism's proven record of accomplishment for creating jobs and generating tax revenue for New York, the industry will continue to play an important role in our efforts to strengthen the state's economy. That is why we are so excited to work with the Erie Canalway and our tourism partners to further develop our strategies to drive tourism throughout New York State." "These workshops will provide the basic tools for all tourism stakeholders in the Erie Canalway Corridor to learn how to attract international tourists" said Beth Sciumeca, Executive Director of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor. "Capitalizing on the rich cultural, scenic, and recreational resources in this region to attract international visitors is a great way to help revitalize upstate NY communities."  "We are thrilled at this opportunity to work with I LOVE NEW YORK and the Erie Canalway to help attract international tourists to Upstate New York State," said Avi Kaptzan, CEO of Kay New Century Tours in Israel. "As many participants of Kay New Century Tours have already discovered, there are a wide variety of dining options, family attractions, vibrant waterfronts and much more for international visitors here in New York."    The workshops will be held:
  • August 30th, Belhurst Castle, 4069 Route 14 South, Geneva, NY 
  • August 31st, Yesterday's Royal, 13 Canal Street, Sylvan Beach, NY 
  • September 1st, Century House, 997 New Loudon Rd. (Route 9), Latham, NY 
For more information or to register for any of the workshops please contact   lori_duell@partner.nps.gov. The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor is one of 49 federally designated National Heritage Areas. Its purpose is to help preserve and interpret the historical, natural, scenic, and recreational resources reflecting its national significance and to help foster revitalization of canalside communities. I LOVE NEW YORK recently became the first state tourist organization to break the 30,000 followers mark on Twitter. For more information on New York's travel destinations, follow I LOVE NEW YORK on Twitter and check out the New York State 2010 Travel Guide. The guide features green travel, outdoor adventures, art and culture, history, family travel, food and drink, shopping and unique lodging. Visitors will also find itineraries for great trips throughout the state. Discover another reason to love New York by visiting http://www.iloveny.com/   

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Contact: Warner Johnston | wjohnston@empire.state.ny.us | 212.803.3740 | 1.800.260.7313 Contact: Lisa Willner| lwillner@empire.state.ny.us | 212.803.3740 | 1.800.260.7313