Caption: Regional Tourism Councils shared their wares at Tourism Day. (Photograph by Shannon Healey)
Tourism officials from across the Commonwealth gathered at the State House on Thursday, April 6 to celebrate Tourism Day in Massachusetts. The annual event is hosted by the 16 Regional Tourism Councils (RTCs) of Massachusetts, along with the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts, and Cultural Development, the Massachusetts Visitors Industry Council and Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT).
Representing the Baker-Polito Administration were Assistant Secretary of Business Development & International Trade Nam Pham and MOTT Executive Director Francois-Laurent Nivaud. To kick off the event, Nivaud presented a Tourism Day Proclamation from the Baker-Polito Administration to Susan Nicholl, RTC representative and executive director of Metro West Visitors Bureau. The proclamation praised the tourism industry “for contributing to our year round economic growth, employment and cultural identity.”
Other speakers at Tourism Day included Representative Cory Atkins and Senator Adam G. Hinds, co-chairs of the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts and Cultural Development. Ann Marie Casey, executive director of the North of Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau, was emcee at the event.
The centerpiece of Tourism Day each year is the exhibition of tourism literature and culinary treats from the regional tourism councils. This is where legislators, state officials and the general public have a chance to meet representatives of each tourism region, pick up the latest brochures and maps, and sample the local food and beverage. Among the favorite products this year were clam chowder, cider donuts, Boston creme pies and cupcakes, and Cape Cod chips.
In 2015, 25 million domestic and 2.5 million international travelers came to Massachusetts, a total of 27.5 million visitors. They spent $20.2 billion on lodging, meals, cultural and recreational attractions, transportation and retail. This direct spending generated $1.3 billion in state and local taxes, and supplied over 135,000 jobs in Massachusetts.
MOTT’s mission is to promote Massachusetts as both a leisure and business travel destination to domestic and international markets and to contribute to the growth of the Commonwealth’s economy. For more information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.