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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2001

Governor Announces Tourism Award Winners -- First Lady Lura Lynn Ryan honored with inaugural Friend of Tourism Award

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today recognized 36 individuals and tourism groups as Governor's Conference Award winners, one of the top honors bestowed in the Illinois tourism industry. He also joined Visit Illinois in honoring First Lady Lura Lynn Ryan for her efforts on behalf of tourism in Illinois. All winners were announced during the Governor's Awards Luncheon at the 2001 Governor's Conference on Tourism.

"We are all aware of the tremendous contributions that tourism makes to the state, regional and local economies," Governor Ryan said. "It's because of the hard work and dedication shown by these groups and individuals that Illinois' tourism industry has become so successful."

Mrs. Ryan was presented with the first ever "Friend of Tourism" award for her contributions to tourism through projects such as "Pennies for Lincoln," the "Made in Illinois" catalogue showcasing our state's extraordinary artists and craftspeople, and the forthcoming Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.

"Much of the success we've had in attracting visitors to Illinois has been the result of partnerships built between the state and local tourism organizations," said Ryan. "I am very proud that my wife, Lura Lynn, is being recognized for her efforts in spreading the word about Illinois, its people, its places and its heritage." The Governor's Awards program was established in 1986 as a way to recognize excellence in marketing local destinations. Presented annually at the Illinois Governor's Conference on Tourism, the awards have become a prime focus of the conference with more than 100 entrants vying for the awards, which are judged by a panel of marketing professionals based on clarity of message, creativity, originality and the project's overall success.

The Governor's Conference on Tourism is designed to further educate members of Illinois' tourism industry on issues affecting travel and tourism on a national and statewide level, reinforce existing tourism development efforts, and plan for future initiatives. The Governor's Conference is hosted by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs, Bureau of Tourism (DCCA/IBOT) and Visit Illinois, the primary umbrella organization promoting tourism through public awareness, governmental relations and education.

"The Governor's Conference on Tourism provides an outstanding networking opportunity for members of the travel industry to learn about best practices in promoting local and regional attractions," said DCCA Director Pam McDonough. "Today's award winners are to be congratulated for the development of innovative and wide-ranging marketing efforts on behalf of their local communities."

The Governor's Conference Awards are presented in three categories: General Advertising and Promotion is split into two divisions: 1A is for organizations with operating budgets under $350,000 and 1B is for groups with budgets over $350,000; Hospitality Organizations; and Community Leaders.

Attached is a list of award winners.

GOVERNOR'S CONFERENCE ON TOURISM

GENERAL ADVERTISING AND PROMOTION:

Newspaper Advertising
Division 1.A
Carbondale Convention and Tourism Bureau

Division 1.B
Decatur Herald and Review

Magazine Advertising
Division 1.A
Carbondale Convention and Tourism Bureau

Division 1.B
Mark Twain Hotels, Inc.

Posters
Division 1.A
Charles Perdew Museum Association

Division 1.B
Aurora Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

General Brochures
Division 1.A
Carbondale Convention and Tourism Bureau

Division 1.B
Elgin Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

Booklets or Area, Media and Meeting Planner Guides
Division 1.A
Ottawa Visitors Center

Division 1.B
Greater Woodfield Convention and Visitors Bureau

Newsletters
Division 1.B
Chicago Office of Tourism

Visitors Guides Including Advertising
Division 1.A
Collinsville Convention and Visitors Bureau

Division 1.B
Peoria Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

Visitors Guides Without Advertising
Division 1.A
Geneva Chamber of Commerce

Division 1.B
Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau

Premium Items
Division 1.A
Ottawa Visitors Center

Division 1.B
Lake County, Illinois Convention and Visitors Bureau

Web Site
Division 1.A
Shelby County Tourism

Division 1.B
Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau

Advertising/PR Campaign, Single Media
Division 1.A
Ottawa Visitors Center

Division 1.B
Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau

Advertising/PR Campaign, Multi Media
Division 1.A
Immigrants & Ingenuity: Northwest Passage Heritage Corridor

Division 1.B
Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum

Citywide Promotional Campaigns
Division 1.A
Northwest Illinois Trail of Terror

Division 1.B
Lake County, Illinois Convention & Visitors Bureau, and the Lake County Board of Commissioners

HOSPITALITY ORGANIZATIONS:

Best Promotional Package with Overnight Stay
Hotels/Motels - Stoney Creek Inn & Conference Center

Bed & Breakfasts - The Goldmoor Inn

Best Marketing Promotion
Restaurants - Greater Woodfield Convention & Visitors Bureau

Best General Promotion
Attractions - National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows

Best Special Promotion
Attractions - Woodfield Shopping Center

COMMUNITY LEADERS:

Friend of Tourism
First Lady Lura Lynn Ryan

Legislative Friend of Tourism
David Leitch, Nominated by the Peoria Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Individual Friend of Tourism
Ray Keller, Nominated by the Northern Illinois Tourism Development Office and the Blackhawk Waterways Convention & Visitors Bureau

Corporate Friend of Tourism
Brewers Distributing, Nominated by the Peoria Area Convention & Visitors Bureau and the East Peoria Department of Tourism

Media Friend of Tourism
Midwest Travel Writer's Association, Nominated by the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

PEER's Choice and Best of Show Awards
Chosen by members of the hospitality industry in attendance at the Illinois Governor's Conference on Tourism

PEER's Choice
Alton Convention & Visitors Bureau

Best of Show
Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau



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