Tapping in to More Tourism Dollars, a workshop targeted for area business owners in Washington County, will be offered on Tuesday, April 7 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Machias CareerCenter at 53 Prescott Drive.

Participants will discuss the 2014 tourism statistics, as well as identify trends and expectations. Led by Crystal Hitchings, from Downeast Acadia Regional Tourism and Jennifer Peters from the Sunrise County Economic Council, attendees will develop strategies encouraging tourists to stay longer and spend more in the region.

“The people of the region have an opportunity to promote their unique culture as an authentic place to visit,” said Hitchings.  “Local efforts should encourage personal connection to the region and provide memorable experiences that inspire word-of-mouth recommendations as well as return visits. We must embrace our stories, engage our communities, invest in our values, collaborate with and support our neighbors, and open ourselves to new possibilities for achieving our shared vision.”

“It is easy to lose sight of what a special and beautiful place this is when we see it every day,” said Peters. “We forget how awesome it is to others who aren’t used to being here.  Every waitress and clerk being asked, ‘What’s there to do around here?’ has an opportunity to engage with visitors and give them a reason to linger in our region, spending more money as well as time.”

The Tapping in to Tourism Dollars workshop is sponsored by the Women’s Business Center at CEI, Sunrise County, Economic Council, and the Maine Woods Tourism Training Initiative with funding support from the US Department of Agricultural Rural Development. This workshop will be facilitated by Ruth Cash-Smith, certified business counselor with the Women’s Business Center at CEI.

The cost of the workshop is $10 and advanced registration is required.  Light refreshments will be provided.  For more information or to register, call Carlene at 255-0983.

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