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01/07/19
The 2019 Not-At-All What You Thought Nebraska State Travel Guide available now

PRESS RELEASE

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Erin Lenz at 402-471-3797, or erin.lenz@nebraska.gov
Jenn Gjerde at 402-471-3768, or jenn.gjerde@nebraska.gov

 

The 2019 Official Not-At-All What You Thought Nebraska State Travel Guide available now

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LINCOLN, Neb. (January 7, 2019) – Think Nebraska is just a flyover state? Hear Nebraska is flat and boring? Think there’s nothing to do here? Well leave your misperceptions at the door and order The Official 2019 Not-At-All What You Thought State Travel Guide and start planning a trip to the state that claims honestly, it’s not for everyone.

As 2019 begins, the Nebraska Tourism Commission retires the 2018 State Travel Guide and starts distributing the new, 2019 guide to potential visitors.

“We’re really excited about this year’s travel guide. It’s bright, lively, funny, quirky and odd… all traits of our new campaign,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism Commission executive director. “Generally, about two-thirds of people who request travel guides actually visit that state. This “conversion rate” is the highest among other methods used to entice travelers to visit a state. So obviously the travel guide is an important part of our marketing efforts.”

The Nebraska travel guide highlights things to see and do all across the state through beautiful pictures and vivid descriptions. You’ll notice that this year’s guide is a little different, incorporating the same messaging and humor as the state’s new viral tourism campaign, “Nebraska. Honestly, it’s not for everyone.” Complete with a new, honest title, The Official Not-At-All What You Thought State Travel Guide, this guide includes witty section headlines like, “Play Like Pioneers, Without all the Hardships,” and creative descriptions like “This is the end of the trail for Nebraska’s reputation as a flat, boring place. Gazillions of amazing trails, hundreds of miles, thousands of things to see. You better get started.” Additionally the guide features the quirky Nebraska activity, tanking, on the cover.

We don’t want to ruin all of the fun surprises this guide has in store, so check it out for yourself and order a free 2019 guide here: https://visitnebraska.com/request-travel-guide.

In 2018, the Nebraska Tourism Commission printed 200,000 copies of the travel guide and distributed them to all 50 states and multiple countries. Tourism is Nebraska’s third largest industry and according to the U.S. Travel Association’s Impact of Travel and State Economies Report, in 2016, travelers to Nebraska generated $731.5 million to federal, state and local governments and created 49,360 jobs.

We know Nebraska isn’t for everyone, but don’t you think you should order a free travel guide to find out for yourself?

       

For more information about travel, events and unique destinations in Nebraska, order your free travel guide today at VisitNebraska.com. Then stay connected with Nebraska Tourism on our Visit Nebraska Facebook page, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram and on YouTube.
 
The mission of the Nebraska Tourism Commission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry making it more viable by creating awareness, attracting increased visitors which results in greater tourism revenue and economic gain throughout the state. To learn more, go to VisitNebraska.com.

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12/13/18
"Honestly, it's not for everyone" featured on LIVE with Kelly and Ryan

PRESS RELEASE

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Erin Lenz at 402-471-3797, or erin.lenz@nebraska.gov
Jenn Gjerde at 402-471-3768, or jenn.gjerde@nebraska.gov

"Honestly, it's not for everyone" featured on LIVE with Kelly and Ryan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LINCOLN, Neb. (December 13, 2018) – Thursday morning, LIVE with Kelly and Ryan used coffee mugs that featured the Nebraska Tourism Commission’s new campaign tagline “Honestly, it’s not for everyone.”

“We announced the new campaign two months ago and it is still being talked about in the media. The best part, we’re receiving free publicity and haven’t even launched the campaign yet,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism executive director.

After hearing how much Kelly and Ryan liked the new campaign, “Nebraska, honestly it’s not for everyone,” the Nebraska Tourism Commission got into contact with the show’s producer and sent mugs for the hosts to use on the show. The white ceramic cups were actually decorated in-house by the Commission's marketing manager. "I knew we wanted a quick turn around on this, so I got out my handy Cricut machine and got to work," said Jenn Gjerde. The mugs read, “Kelly, honestly it’s not for everyone” and “Ryan, honestly it’s not for everyone.”

“Have you been to Nebraska? Because all I want to do now is take a trip to Nebraska,” Kelly said on the show while talking to actor Greg Kinnear in October about the new campaign.

The campaign was unveiled at the 2018 Nebraska Tourism Conference in October. Within the first 24 hours of the announcement, the campaign received $1.3 million of free publicity. Since then, the commission has received over $7.1 million in publicity value and reached over 884,301,401 people based on trackable coverage through media monitoring services.

Want your own mug? Keep an eye on the Visit Nebraska Facebook page for upcoming promotional items like t-shirts, coffee mugs, koozies and more. Additionally, The Official 2019 Not-At-All-What-You-Thought State Travel Guide, available in January, will feature the same self-deprecating humor as the campaign and a VisitNebraska.com website relaunch will happen in March.

       

For more information about travel, events and unique destinations in Nebraska, order your free travel guide today at VisitNebraska.com. Then stay connected with Nebraska Tourism on our Visit Nebraska Facebook page, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram and on YouTube.
 
The mission of the Nebraska Tourism Commission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry making it more viable by creating awareness, attracting increased visitors which results in greater tourism revenue and economic gain throughout the state. To learn more, go to VisitNebraska.com.

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12/12/18
Registration is now open for 2019 Agri/Eco - Tourism Workshop

PRESS RELEASE

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Press Contact: Erin Lenz at 402-471-3797, or erin.lenz@nebraska.gov
Workshop Contact: Karen Kollars at 308-249-3220 or karen.kollars@nebraska.gov

Registration is now open for 2019 Agri/Eco-Tourism Workshop

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LINCOLN, Neb. (December 12, 2018) – Register now for the 2019 Nebraska Agri/Eco–Tourism Workshop, presented by the Nebraska Tourism Commission and partners. Learn how to start, grow and market a successful agri/eco-tourism business at this workshop held in Ord, Nebraska, February 26-28, 2019.

“Nebraska has much to offer travelers who are looking for an adventure in our wide open plains. Not only does this workshop offer insightful information and successful examples on how to cater to those travelers, it offers valuable networking opportunities to those in agritourism or ecotourism businesses as well,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism executive director.

The workshop will kick-off on Tuesday afternoon at Bootleg Brewers, a brewery tucked away in the middle of the Sandhills outside of Taylor, Nebraska that offers fresh brewed beer, and a home cooked meal. The workshop will begin with a Nebraska Tourism Commission meeting followed by dinner at the brewery.

On Wednesday, enjoy behind-the-scenes tours of successful agri/eco-tourism businesses. Located on Switzer Ranch, Calamus Outfitters offers river adventures, bird watching, ecotours and more; Comstock Premier Lodge provides cozy accommodations as well as guided hunting and ranch tours featuring a diverse herd of bison; and Rowse’s 1+1 offers tourists a dude ranch work-ation, giving them firsthand experience of day to day life on a working ranch. Later that evening and back by popular demand, network with industry members while trying local food, wine and beer at the Taste & Feel event.

On Thursday, walk away with practical tips after attending educational sessions focused on effective marketing, business sustainability and more. The workshop will wrap up Thursday night with a social event and a performance at the Golden Husk in Ord.

Additional information including registration, lodging and a full schedule of workshop events can be found here: https://visitnebraska.com/media/industry/2019-agri-eco-tourism-workshop

     

For more information about travel, events and unique destinations in Nebraska, order your free travel guide today at VisitNebraska.com. Then stay connected with Nebraska Tourism on our Visit Nebraska Facebook page, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram and on YouTube.
 
The mission of the Nebraska Tourism Commission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry making it more viable by creating awareness, attracting increased visitors which results in greater tourism revenue and economic gain throughout the state. To learn more, go to VisitNebraska.com.

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10/30/18
749 Nebraska Passport participants travel to every stop

PRESS RELEASE

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Press Contact: Erin Lenz at 402-471-3797, or erin.lenz@nebraska.gov
Passport Coordinator: Erin Wirth at 402-471-3789, or erin.wirth@nebraska.gov

749 Nebraska Passport participants travel to every stop

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LINCOLN, Neb. (October 30, 2018) – This summer, a record breaking amount of people traveled around Nebraska to get stamps for the Nebraska Passport program. This year, 749 participants submitted Passports with all 70 stops stamped, versus 469 in 2017 and 168 in 2016 when the program hosted 80 stops. These “Passport Champions” hail from Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Oregon.

“The Nebraska Passport gave me a renewed sense of state pride,” said Melanie Wortsell of Norfolk. “The people we met along the way were so friendly and genuine. We saw places that we'd never heard of before. The scenery in western Nebraska was incredible. It was an awesome adventure!”

2018 Nebraska Passport Statistics:

  • There were 95% more prize entry sheets submitted and 50% more Passports requested in 2018 than 2017.
  • From submitted Passports, 144,903 total stamps were collected.
  • The average number of stamps submitted per participant was 31.
  • Participants included residents from 418 Nebraska communities and 46 states.
  • Passport participants ranged in age from 1-year-old to 98-years-old.
  • Top 15 Most Visited Stops
    1. UNL Dairy Store, Lincoln
    2. Rabbit Hole Bakery, Lincoln
    3. Piezano’s, Lincoln
    4. The Archway, Kearney
    5. Zio’s Pizza, Omaha
    6. Wave Pizza Co., Grand Island
    7. Platte Valley Antique Mall, Greenwood
    8. Sheldon Museum of Art, Lincoln
    9. Mahoney State Park, Ashland
    10. Passageway Gallery, Omaha
    11. The Durham Museum, Omaha
    12. Gene Roncka Willow Point Gallery, Ashland
    13. Milady Coffeehouse, Fremont
    14. Bottle Rocket Brewing Co., Seward
    15. Shopping Tripps, Kearney

“This program has grown year after year, achieving the goal of getting Nebraskans to explore the state they call home,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism Commission executive director. “To have 749 people make it to every corner of Nebraska and to see participants from 46 states is absolutely remarkable.”

In 2017, the Nebraska Passport program generated nearly $6 million in travel spending throughout the state and $469,500 in state and local tax revenue, according to a study done by Dean Runyan & Associates.

The winner of this year’s grand prize drawing is Melissa Martin of Shelton. She will receive an Omaha Steaks Butcher’s Share Quarter of Beef with a free chest freezer, in addition to other program prizes.

Additional drawings were done for 300 Nebraska Lottery scratch coupons, a year’s worth of Bakers Candies Chocolates, a year’s worth of Runza and a variety of other items from the 2018 passport stops.

Travelers who visited participating locations and collected stamps could also earn a passport decal, $15 in Nebraska lottery coupons, a Nebraska tourism calendar, Nebraska poster booklet and Passport Champion apparel.
 
Be a 2019 Nebraska Passport Stop
Not only does the Nebraska Passport program benefit travelers through helping them create life-long memories, the program greatly benefits the 70 chosen Passport stops through increased traffic, sales and awareness.

“The Passport program was a wonderful experience and brought so much awareness to our small business,” said Cyndie Schoof, owner of Sugar Shack Country Candles in Edgar. “We had hundreds of Passport visitors each month. We had such a great time visiting with them and hearing stories about their Passport travels. We have gained customers for life from this program.”

Applications are now being accepted for Nebraska Tourism’s 2019 Passport program. Any Nebraska destination is welcome to apply to become a Passport “stop.” Past stops have included museums, restaurants, outdoor adventures, retail stores, etc.

To complete the 2019 Passport online application, as well as to view information about Passport stop requirements, how the program benefits Passport stops, and details about the application process, go to: http://nebraskapassport.com/program/application/. The application deadline is December 31, 2018. Questions about participating in the program can be directed to info@nebraskapassport.com

       

For more information about travel, events and unique destinations in Nebraska, order your free travel guide today at VisitNebraska.com. Then stay connected with Nebraska Tourism on our Visit Nebraska Facebook page, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram and on YouTube.
 
The mission of the Nebraska Tourism Commission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry making it more viable by creating awareness, attracting increased visitors which results in greater tourism revenue and economic gain throughout the state. To learn more, go to VisitNebraska.com.

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10/25/18
Nebraska Tourism Commission sends pumpkin to White House

PRESS RELEASE

FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Erin Lenz at 402-326-9941, or erin.lenz@nebraska.gov
Jenn Gjerde at 402-525-4455, or jenn.gjerde@nebraska.gov

Nebraska Tourism Commission sends pumpkin to White House

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LINCOLN, Neb. (October 25, 2018) – October 26 is National Pumpkin Day and the Nebraska Tourism Commission is celebrating by sending a pumpkin to the White House.

The National Travel & Tourism Office (NTTO) was tasked with putting a display together for the October 28, 2018 White House Halloween Party for children of military men and women stationed in the DC-Metro area. NTTO asked state tourism offices to send a painted pumpkin that creatively reflects their state.

“We’re thrilled to collaborate with state travel industry colleagues on this project and give a Nebraska artist the honor of having her work on display at the house that symbolizes the American people. Nebraska Tourism is appreciative of this opportunity,” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism executive director.

This week, the Nebraska Tourism Commission sent in a Nebraska themed pumpkin, created by Tara Lienemann from North Platte. The pumpkin is decorated with a large Husker N surrounded by small images of corn, Chimney Rock, the Oregon Trail, State Capitol and a railroad. Tara is a local born and raised North Platte artist who often showcases her pieces in the Prairie Arts Center gallery. She recently painted a dog statue named “Nebraska” that raised a lot of money for a local charity.

“I knew Tara would be the perfect artist for this project. Her art and her heart are the epitome of a true Nebraskan. It’s vivid, refined and fun!” said Holly Carlini, executive director of the Prairie Arts Center.

The week of October 29, after the event, all of the state pumpkins will be on display at the Old Executive Office Building, just west of the White House, for people to enjoy.

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For more information about travel, events and unique destinations in Nebraska, order your free travel guide today at VisitNebraska.com. Then stay connected with Nebraska Tourism on our Visit Nebraska Facebook page, on Twitter, on Pinterest, on Instagram and on YouTube.
 
The mission of the Nebraska Tourism Commission is to expand Nebraska’s dynamic and diverse travel industry making it more viable by creating awareness, attracting increased visitors which results in greater tourism revenue and economic gain throughout the state. To learn more, go to VisitNebraska.com.

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