The first week in May is recognized annually as National Travel and Tourism Week. This tradition began in 1984 to recognize the impact of tourism on the economy of the United States.
According to the U.S. Travel Association, travel and tourism is a $759 billion industry that generates a total of $1.8 trillion in economic output in the United States. In Lancaster County, tourism has an economic impact of $337.4 million annually and employs roughly 5,700 people. To help celebrate National Tourism Week, which runs from May 4-12, the Lincoln Convention and Visitor's Bureau (CVB) is offering a vacation alternative for Lincoln area residents looking for savings in their travel budget.
Why not "Be a Tourist" in your hometown?
The Lincoln CVB is partnering with 33 Lincoln area attractions, locally owned restaurants and events in its tenth year of the "Be a Tourist" Campaign. To coincide with National Tourism Week, the award winning program kicks off May 6, and will continue through Aug. 30.
The "Be A Tourist" program is simple. Participants can pick up a passport at sites located around the community, including the participating Lincoln passport stops and the Visitor Center (7th and P Streets). It can also be downloaded at www.lincoln.org. Each location has a designated spot on the passport which will be stamped when a person visits the location. Participants are asked to visit at least six of the locations and turn in completed passports for a chance of winning one of the many prize packages.
A random drawing from all completed passports that have been turned in will be held at the end of the program. Prizes will be awarded during a celebration held in September. For a complete listing of the prize packages, or to obtain a copy of the passport, visit the CVB website the first week of May. The "Be A Tourist" program has been honored by the Nebraska Department of Travel & Tourism as the Outstanding Tourism Campaign for 2011.
For more information, contact the Lincoln Convention and Visitors Bureau at 434-5335 or go to the website at www.lincoln.org.