On Wednesday, May 9, 2012, travel and hospitality leaders from across the Commonwealth gathered at the State House on Beacon Hill in Boston to celebrate Tourism Day in Massachusetts. The event was part of National Travel& Tourism Week activities taking place across the United States from May 5-13, 2012.
Lt. Governor Tim Murray said in a statement, "From Pittsfield to Provincetown, the Commonwealth is a compelling and attractive tourism destination...home to extraordinary historical and cultural experiences. There is a wealth of outdoor recreational activities and great family attractions spread across the state’s charming small towns and vibrant cities. There are also stunning landscapes and beaches that stretch along 2,800 miles of coastline.
"To keep tourism as a vital component of the Massachusetts economy, we must continue to invest in compelling, year-round marketing programs targeted at new and repeat visitors from the U.S and international markets," Lt. Murray said.
"Tourism is rebounding and continues to be one of the Commonwealth’s strongest industries,” said Betsy Wall, executive director of Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT). “We are optimistic about the future of this sector, which employs 122,000 Massachusetts residents.”
Among the speakers at Tourism Day were Senator Eileen Donohue and Representative Sarah Peake, co-chairs of the Tourism, Arts and Cultural Development Committee; Wendy Northcross, CEO and Executive Director of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce; and Greg Bialecki, MA. Secretary of Housing and Economic Development.
Yesterday's event, which was free and open to the public, included a showcase of regional food offerings and marketing programs from all 16 designated tourism councils throughout the Commonwealth. Among the favorites: cream pie pastries from Omni Parker Hotel's Parker Restaurant in Boston, Murdick's Fudge from Martha's Vineyard, and chocolate chip cookies from Yankee Candle Shop in Deerfield.
Tourism is Massachusetts’third-largest industry and is vital to the Commonwealth’s success and economic recovery, according to MOTT statistics. In 2010, the tourism industry was responsible for more than 122,000 jobs and direct spending of $15.5 billion, bringing $1 billion in state and local tax revenue to the Commonwealth while paying out $3.5 billion in wages.
For more details on visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.