Come to Tourism Summit 2.0 Monday

Published 11:48 pm Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Tourism IS economic development. No two ways about it — tourism is a very important part of the economy of Natchez-Adams County, as you can see from the statistics in the 2016 report from the Mississippi Development Authority in our ad in today’s paper.

The staff at Visit Natchez and the Natchez Convention Promotion Commission are working hard to develop educational programs and initiatives that will help our tourism partners — and ultimately all our citizens — by growing our tourism products and offering opportunities to learn about the current trends in tourism, destination marketing and our visitors.

Last year was a banner year for Natchez — honoring and celebrating our 300 years of remarkable history, with many in the community coming together to make it a year for the record books. But we don’t want to stop there! The mission of Natchez 300 of “commemorating the past, celebrating the present and creating the future” should be the roadmap for the future development of Natchez, in tourism and as a community, and it is vital that we all work together to begin looking at developing that future.

As part of that vision, Visit Natchez and the Natchez Convention Promotion Commission are offering several opportunities to come together to work toward these goals. We are about to host our summer tourism summit — “Tourism Summit 2.0 New Products and Next Generations” — on Monday, July 10 at the Hotel VUE and we invite EVERYONE interested in tourism — and the future of Natchez — to attend. There are two identical 3-hour sessions available so attendees have the option of attending either the morning or afternoon session. Sessions will be from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 4 p.m. In addition to current trends in tourism and generational marketing, each session will include a hands-on product development workshop focused on cultural and heritage tourism facilitated by Kathleen Bond, and a forum for any discussion and questions at the end. There is no cost to attend — just bring your open mind and creative ideas! Registration deadline is July 9th. For more information, contact Visit Natchez at 601-446-6345 or email kelin@visitnatchez.org.

We have been hosting “Lunch & Learns” this summer with different tourism-related themes each month. Please email kelin@visitnatchez.org for details.

Also, we are in the budgeting process for fiscal year 2018 and remind organizations who might be considering requesting assistance from the NCPC, applications are accepted twice a year — in July and January. If you need the guidelines and application, please contact Jawana Lowe at Visit Natchez at 601-446-6345.

In addition, Visit Natchez is interested in hearing from our partners who might be interested in co-op advertising. This is a great opportunity to help get your business out there and share the cost!  The application and agreement are also available at Visit Natchez so let us know if you’re interested.

We can’t stress enough the importance of us all working together to grow and improve our tourism offerings, and in turn grow and improve our City for all of us.  Natchez has so much to offer, and it is going to take all of us to make Natchez,and what we offer our guests, the very best it can be. We have the chance to be the leader in cultural, heritage tourism and I believe we can make that happen — together.  Make no mistake — Tourism IS economic development.  Hope to see you Monday, July 10 for “Tourism 2.0 — New Products and Next Generations.”
Jennifer Combs is the executive director of the Visit Natchez.