News and Music Discovery
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Some crews will be doing work on our WKMT transmitter in Water Valley this Wednesday, Thursday & Friday. 89.5 FM will be off the air starting at 9am each of those days. We're sorry for the disruption. The WKMS main signal and other signals will not be affected.

Kentucky Tourism Marketing Season in Full Bloom

churchill_downs_derby_actionsports_123rf.jpg
actionsports, 123rf Stock Photo
/

With the Kentucky Derby less than two weeks away and the summer travel season approaching, state tourism officials are in full advertising mode right now.  Those in tourism stress the economic gains seen through increased tourist numbers.

Now is the time to roll out the bluegrass carpet to visitors from far and near.  Kentucky Travel and Tourism Commissioner Kristen Branscum admits the Derby attracts visitors through tradition.  But Branscum says the term “Kentucky Derby’ can benefit attractions three hours away from Louisville.  And the state focus is on out of state visitors.

“We focus on really outside of the state.  We want to get those visitors from other states, other countries.  We want to get them into Kentucky and spend their time and their money in our communities,” said Branscum.

The Kentucky Derby traditionally attracts a big crowd on its own.  But, a number of smaller businesses do count on state tourism marketing to help generate commercial dollars.  Pike County Tourism, Convention, and Visitors Bureau Director Tony Tackett says that comes into play for bed and breakfasts, boutiques, gift shops, and diners.  “You know they rely on us because they don’t have that hub of marketing dollar.  Whether it’s conference or conventions, honeymoons or weddings people come to Kentucky for.  If they do not know, they do not show,” noted Tackett.

New travel figures are due out this spring.  Branscum says some 26 million visitors made a stop in Kentucky in 2016.  She says the 1% state transient room tax generates about $12 million annually.

© 2018 WEKU

Stu Johnson is a reporter/producer at WEKU in Lexington, Kentucky.
Related Content