Monday, May 05, 2008

Tourism Week in Kentucky

Um, could it have been last week instead of May 10-18?
Gov. Steve Beshear today declared the week of May 10-18 National Tourism Week in Kentucky, noting the importance of tourism to the state’s economy.

“Tourism in Kentucky is the third largest industry and second largest employer,” Beshear said. “We want to make sure Americans and the rest of the world knows about the natural beauty and tourism destinations in Kentucky.”

Beshear also announced that the Tourism Industry Association indicates that tourism in Kentucky grew by 6.5 percent in 2007, compared to the previous year. The figures show tourism has a $10.7 billion annual economic impact in the state.

The Tourism Industry Association of America is celebrating the 25th anniversary of tourism week. In Kentucky, the Department of Tourism is using the week to encourage Kentuckians to visit places in their home state with the theme “Discover Your Own Backyard.”

Beshear signed a proclamation for National Tourism Week during a ceremony at the Kentucky History Center before representatives of the state’s tourism industry. The History Center brought out some of its “treasures,” including a watch owned by Abraham Lincoln.

The Department of Tourism is also sponsoring an online prize giveaway for Kentuckians starting this month to highlight attractions in the state. The prizes include gift certificates, tours, concert tickets and dinner-for-two coupons. All prizes are valued at $50 or more and were contributed by businesses and attractions from throughout the state. To sign up, visit

First Lady Jane Beshear, who is helping promote Kentucky tourism, announced the first two winners of the prizes. The contest will continue during the summer.

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