Sharing the rich cultural experiences of Nevada’s Indian tribes with tourists and travelers across the world is the goal of the sixth annual Nevada Tribal Tourism Conference, which begins April 22 at Lake Tahoe. The theme of the three-day conference is “Tourism: Empowering Native Voices” and speaks to the tribes’ strengths in telling their own stories, from their perspective and with their own authentic voices.
“Tourism is a way for Nevada’s tribes to share who they are with the world,” said Sherry Rupert, executive director of the Nevada Indian Commission. “The rich cultural heritage we possess enhances the Nevada experience and the leading industry in the state.”
Visitors want to experience tribal life in many ways and their economic investment can empower native people and perpetuate diverse cultures. The conference will help local tribes successfully incorporate best practices and innovative techniques in tourism.
Among the topics covered will be how to use geographic information systems to get visitors to stay longer and spend more; using video to tell stories; and what goes into building a successful tourist itinerary. Guest speakers include Garet Couch, president of the National Tribal Geographic Information Support Center; Donna Cossette, director of the Churchill County Museum; and Roger Saterstrom, product manager for Tauck, Inc.
The conference also offers an April 24 bus tour to Meeks Bay, a tribal tourism business on the west shore of Lake Tahoe; as well as a stop at Cave Rock on the east.
Nevada’s Indian Territory is a nonprofit organization and marketing arm of the Nevada Commission on Tourism organized to assist the state of Nevada and Nevada Indian tribes in the promotion and marketing efforts of cultural and special events, tribal visitor centers and tribal enterprises.
The Indian Territory provides technical support, training and resources to Nevada’s tribes, helping tribes to share their knowledge, inventory tourism assets and increase marketing. It is a partner with Brand USA and the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA).
Registration is open until April 18. More information on the conference at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa and Casino is available at NevadaIndianTerritory.com or at 775-687-8333 and [email protected].
Chris Moran has lived in Reno since 1996, and currently works at the Nevada Division of Tourism as a public relations specialist. She is a former editor and writer at the Reno Gazette-Journal, and has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California, Berkeley. Her hobbies include skiing, hiking, reading, photography, coffee and coffeehouses, and exploring Nevada. Check out her blog at www.ChrisinNevada.wordpress.com.