Going on Faith

OCT-NOV 2016

The Magazine for faith-based travel planners.

Issue link: http://digital.goingonfaith.com/i/737403

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Page 12 of 35

TRAVEL INDUSTRY SUCCESS About 105 travel industry vendors attended the conference determined to attract new business with so many eager travel planners in the same room. Francois Jean Viel of Quebec National Shrines came to Ontario to promote his region's Catholic heritage sites. "We have five national shrines in the province," he said. "My goal is to make Quebec's shrines known and to attract as many people to them as possible. By visiting all of these Roman Catholic shrines, you get to see all of Quebec." Matt Scott of Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad in Elkins, West Virginia, wants to bring visitors to his state's beautiful mountains. "We hope to sign new bus groups," he said. "Many of my appointments were from the Midwest and West, and [we] hope to grow those markets. I've had four bookings this year from folks in California. We're stretching our wings." The train excursions run from two to eight hours, with lunch included. "Groups travel up into unspoiled wilderness only accessible by rail. Riders step off the train and smell fresh mountain air and explore waterfalls." Stephanie MacCargar flew all the way from Florida's Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort. "It's our first year at the conference, and it's good to be exposed to new planners we haven't seen before," she said. "We have many unique resort features that people on the West Coast may not be aware of. Religious groups are a big market for us." Michele Renahan of Discover Gilbert in Arizona said her town is ramping up tourism. "We're 20 minutes southeast of Phoenix and are exploring the group market," she said. "I like the smallness of this meeting because it's a great way to dip your toe in and see what fits." Michael Benton from Davey Coach in Sedalia, Colorado, was selling buses. "The church market is a big sector we service, as well as tour operators," Benton said. "We sell many buses, new and used, with parts, service and graphics available. We have ABA-equipped and regular buses." LOOKING TO 2017 The Going On Faith Conference will take a fresh, interesting turn in 2017 when it is held in Ohio's Amish Country. "It will have a totally different feel," said Cappuzzello. "We all will go back in time, so to speak. We'll be in a giant church with not one hotel, but four smaller ones serving us." "Given that we are the No. 1 Amish population in the world, we have people come there to experience the slower pace of life," said Codi Mast of the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau in Millersburg, Ohio. "You can unplug. We have many faith-based groups visit and, overall, have so many authentic experiences to see and participate in that are part of the community and culture." C O N T I N U E D F RO M PAG E 1 1 DEARBORN COUNTY – SOUTHEAST INDIANA Twilight Tour Historic Mansions Dinner After a day at the Creation Museum and check-in at your Lawrenceburg hotel, venture down the Ohio River Scenic Byway to dine in historic Aurora's landmark estates – Hillforest Victorian House Museum and Veraestau Historic Site. The evening includes tours of both properties. ($38/person, all inclusive; 2 tours, dinner, dessert buffet; 20 person minimum; Escort & Driver Comps) Hotels & Attractions only 5 minutes/1 exit from Creation Museum Dearborn County Convention Visitor & Tourism Bureau 320 Walnut Street • Lawrenceburg, IN 47025 • 1-800-322-8198 www.TOURSoutheastIndiana.com Contact Dearborn County Group Sales, Sally McWilliams at 812-265-6999 or smcwilliams@visitsoutheastindiana.com "Like" TOUR Southeast Indiana on Facebook

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