What: Nevada Governor’s Conference on Tourism, an annual event for the tourism industry to network, learn, share ideas, and discuss the current and upcoming trends in tourism. This year’s conference is “Creating and Marketing the Experience,” and will focus on why and how to create an experience for visitors so they spread the word and return for future visits.
When: October 27-29, 2014
Where: Atlantis Casino Resort Spa, Reno
Why: Tourism is the state’s No. 1 industry, and the largest driver of employment. The conference is an opportunity for media to learn about national and local issues that can impact tourism, and meet the professionals who compose the tourism industry. This year’s conference will be interactive – a very hands-on demonstration of what it means to create an experience that will be remembered and retold by the visitor.
- Eric Whitacre, 10:45 a.m., Oct. 28 – Eric Whitacre hails from Yerington, Nev., and is a University of Nevada, Las Vegas, graduate who has taken his vision of choral composition and transmuted it to digital form, creating the renowned “virtual choir.” He notably conducted Virtual Choir 4, made up of nearly 6,000 singers from 101 countries, in a virtual performance of his work that premiered in 2013 at Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation Festival’s Gala. He brings this experience of conducting many parts to create an unforgettable whole the to the speaking stage in his talks about the potential that exists when people are invited to share their talent with peers.
- The Travel Effect, 1:15 p.m., Oct. 28 – The “Travel Effect” is the impact that travel has on one’s health, happiness, and overall well-being, as well as on an employer’s bottom line. Americans failed to use more than 400 million days of earned leave last year, impacting the nation’s economy and taking a toll on workplace productivity, personal well-being, and family relationships. Gary Oster with the U.S. Travel Association will explain the organization’s appeal to Americans to use their vacation days, for their own health and for the economic health of the nation.
- Nevada Marketplace, 8 a.m., Oct. 29 – Watch Nevada tourism suppliers (hoteliers, visitor bureaus, attractions) do real business with buyers (tour operators, wholesale partners, and airline representatives) from all over the world. This is an opportunity for Nevada businesses to meet one-on-one with the companies that sell travel to consumers and can have a very direct effect on visitation to Nevada. This year’s marketplace will present buyers from Brazil, China, Mexico, South Korea, and the United States.
- The Experience Economy, 10 a.m., Oct. 29 – This session is the “why” behind the conference theme: “creating and marketing the experience.” Today’s consumers want an experience, not just a project. They want to feel they’re a part of something, a part of an experience. And they’ll pay to get that experience. This session will discuss how “work is theater, and every business is a stage,” and how Nevada businesses can increase their revenue by setting the stage for their customers.
- Experiential Lodging, 11 a.m., Oct. 29 – Rob Hendricks, general manager of Whitney Peak Hotel in Reno, and Madeleine Pickens, developer of Mustang Monument near Wells, Nev., will show how they embraced an idea and their surroundings to create a new experience option for visitors to Nevada. This panel will be moderated by Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki.
- International Panel, 2 p.m., Oct. 29 – A perennial favorite at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism, this panel will discuss the current international opportunities and the potential for growth. The panel will include Delta Airlines from South Korea, an international sales executive from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, and Nevada’s representatives from Brazil, China, and Mexico.
Working media are welcome to cover the conference in whole or in part at no cost, but advance registration is required. Working media can contact Bethany Drysdale, [email protected] if they wish to attend. Interviews with speakers can be arranged with some advance notice as well. Travel Nevada does not cover travel costs to attend the conference.
The full agenda and speakers’ bios can be found at www.governorsconference.org.
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.