NATIONAL TRAVEL AND TOURISM WEEK
National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW), is an annual celebration of the contributions of the U.S. tourism and hospitality industry. In the greater Grand Rapids, MN area tourism and hospitality serves a critical role in driving economic growth and building the path forward through the theme Future of Travel.
This year’s theme elevates how the travel industry can restore the workforce, help communities recover, foster sustainability, usher in new innovations and reconnect travelers in the U.S. and around the world. Megan Christianson, Executive Director shares, “the future of travel in the greater Grand Rapids, Minnesota area is bright. The pandemic has travelers seeking the off-the-beaten path locations, and the greater Grand Rapids, Minnesota area offers just that.”
Grand Rapids, Minnesota is a small rural town located in the middle of Minnesota’s nature surrounded by over 1 million publicly accessible forest land, and over 1,400 area lakes. The perfect road trip destination that offers small town charm, local craft breweries, boutique style shops, art & culture, and cozy lodging. This is the perfect place to reconnect, recharge and relax on vacation in northern Minnesota. Learn more at: www.visitgrandrapids.com.
Celebrated annually the first full week in May, NTTW was created by Congress in 1983 to elevate the economic power of travel in the U.S. The 39th annual NTTW (May 1-7) arrives as the industry looks ahead to future growth and success following the challenges of the past two years.
“NTTW has special significance this year as the travel industry looks ahead to a bright future,” said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow. “This NTTW is an opportunity to recognize the collective strength of the U.S. travel industry and how we are rebuilding to be more dynamic, innovative, sustainable and inclusive in the months and years to come.
“Before the pandemic, travel generated $2.6 trillion in economic output, supported 17 million American jobs and delivered a $51 billion trade surplus to the U.S.—evidence of the outsized role the industry will play in driving America’s recovery and future economic growth,” added Dow. In Itasca County tourism went from $79 million in economic impact in 2019 to $69 million economic impact in 2020. The state of Minnesota went from $16.6 billion in 2019 to $11.7 billion in 2020.
Visit Grand Rapids is celebrating travel’s promising future by thanking the tourism and hospitality industry through a weeklong public relations campaign in local newspapers, radio ads and social media posts. “The pandemic impacted us differently than it did in big cities. While we saw higher decreases in group business, as well as small retail and restaurant business; our resort business and vacation rental business saw a slighter decrease. In 2021 we saw a large increase in resort and vacation rental business. Now in 2022 the demand is up again for people seeking small town charm and to experience local. Visitors are seeking memorable experiences with those they love to its fullest. They are taking more time for a better work life balance, and finally taking all their PTO days. Our prime location in the middle of Minnesota’s nature makes the Itasca County region the perfect place for people to reconnect with their loved ones, recharge on our lakes and trails, and relax at our beautiful and diverse lodging properties,” states Christianson.
Said Kris Ives, President of Visit Grand Rapids, “Visit Grand Rapids is planning for a future that will increase the economic impact for greater Grand Rapids, Minnesota area tourism industry and economy. This National Travel and Tourism Week, we are spotlighting how travel benefits our workforce, supports our local economy, fosters sustainability and innovations, and reconnects Americans to each other and the world.”
Please visit ustravel.org/NTTW to learn more about National Travel and Tourism Week.