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Tourism Industry Wins Bid to Host International Tourism Conference

Tourism Industry Comes Together and Wins Bid to Host International Tourism Conference in February 2014

2014 Go West Summit comes to Pierce County thanks to industry collaboration; Washington state to benefit

A coalition of public and private entities collaborated to secure the 2014 Go West Summit in Pierce County, an exciting tourism and economic development opportunity for the area and Washington state. The four-day conference, scheduled for Feb. 24-27, 2014, will bring more than 150 international and domestic tour operators and 200 tourism suppliers from the western United States, plus media and U.S. Embassy delegates. Five experiential tours during the Go West Summit called Adventure Day tours will highlight key attractions in Pierce County.

According to a Go West Summit survey, over $14.5 million worth of contracts were signed on the show floor during this year’s conference in Fort Worth, Texas and the conference is expected to bring more than 6.2 million visitors over 18 months.

“Collaboration with statewide partners helped Pierce County secure Go West 2014,” said Bennish Brown, president and CEO of the Tacoma Regional Convention + Visitor Bureau (TRCVB). “This is an incredible opportunity for the local and state economy and travel industry to emphasize the assets and amenities of the Pacific Northwest.”

Cities within Pierce County such as Tacoma and Lakewood will prepare for the Go West Summit over the next six months. The TRCVB is working with area restaurants, attractions and surrounding cities to plan evening receptions and experiential activities for conference attendees such as the five Adventure Day tours that will highlight Mount Rainier National Park and the glass art and collector vehicle culture in Tacoma.

“As the second largest city in Pierce County, Lakewood is thrilled to welcome Go West to the region,” noted Ellie Chambers-Grady, economic development manager for the City of Lakewood. “The county has so much to gain from hosting the Summit, particularly within the international travel industry.”

The TRCVB partnered with the City of Tacoma, Greater Tacoma Convention + Trade Center (GTCTC) and Hotel Murano to submit a proposal to host the 2014 Go West Summit in Tacoma. Eleven tourism organizations attended a welcome dinner for representatives to differentiate Pierce County as a host destination and showcase Washington’s support of the conference. Tourism organizations that attended the dinner included the TRCVB, Hotel Murano, Olympia Peninsula, Washington Tourism Alliance, Washington State Destination Marketing Organization, Visit Seattle, Visit Spokane, Visit Rainier, Visit Vancouver USA, Seattle Southside and Yakima Valley.

Media interested in attending the Go West Summit can register online at: www.gowestsummit.com/registration.cfm .

About Go West

Go West Summit is a marketplace that brings together the highest quality suppliers in the western states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. The Summit provides international and U.S. based tour operators a venue to meet with suppliers to generate tourism business into the western United States. The Summit is regarded by participating tourism and travel professionals as a premier conference, among the best of its type, as well as an efficient and economical mechanism for booking international business. For more information, visit: www.gowestsummit.com .

About TRCVB

The TRCVB is the official destination marketing organization for Tacoma and Pierce County, Wash. As a leader in tourism, the TRCVB promotes and packages the destination to attract and meet the needs of meetings and conventions, group tours, special interest groups and the leisure traveler. For more information, visit: www.traveltacoma.com .

About Lakewood, Wash.

Lakewood is the second largest city in Pierce County and strategically located between Sea-Tac International Airport and Olympia, the state’s capital. The city is home to 60,000 residents and nearly 3,800 businesses. Lakewood is the host community to Joint Base Lewis-McChord and Camp Murray, two major military installations. The city offers numerous recreational and cultural activities for locals, day-trippers and weekend travelers seeking hidden treasures in the Northwest. Lakewood is a sought after destination for vacationers looking for outdoor fun, foodies craving international food and dog lovers traveling with canine companions. For more information, visit: www.cityoflakewood.us .